Seoul Prosecutors Seek Arrest Warrants for Kia Tigers’ Manager and Former GM on Bribery Charges

SEOUL — In a significant move, prosecutors have requested arrest warrants for the current manager and a former general manager of the Kia Tigers, one of South Korea's leading professional baseball teams, on charges of bribery, officials disclosed on Monday.

According to Yonhap News Agency, filed last Wednesday, target Kim Jong-kook, the team's manager, and Jang Jung-suk, its former general manager.

The investigation has focused on allegations that Jang, during his tenure as general manager, demanded a kickback from a free agent during contract negotiations. Following these allegations, Jang was dismissed from his position with the team last year. As the inquiry progressed, additional criminal activities involving both Jang and the currently serving manager, Kim, came to light. However, the accusations against Kim are reportedly unrelated to the kickback incident involving Jang.

The prosecution has remained tight-lipped about the specifics of the bribery suspicions surrounding Kim, only noting that they do not pertain to player recruitment. In response to the ongoing investigation, the Kia Tigers announced that Kim Jong-kook has been temporarily relieved of his managerial duties.

The Seoul Central District Court is slated to conduct a hearing on Tuesday to decide on the issuance of the arrest warrants. This case marks a precedent as it is the first instance where an arrest warrant has been sought against a sitting manager of a professional baseball team in South Korea for corruption-related charges. Previously, a similar legal action was taken in 1983 against Kim Jin-young, the manager of the now-defunct Sammi Superstars, who was arrested for assaulting an umpire during a match.

scroll to top