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Prosecution raids Cheong Wa Dae office over probe into ex-vice mayor

13:40 December 04, 2019

SEOUL, Dec. 4 (Yonhap) -- The prosecution raided a division of the presidential office Cheong Wa Dae on Wednesday for its probe into an alleged cover-up of an inspection into an ex-vice mayor who faces bribery charges.

The Seoul Eastern District Prosecutors Office said it launched the raid on the Cheong Wa Dae office at 11:30 a.m. after securing a warrant from a court.

The move appears to be aimed at obtaining evidence in the case of Yoo Jae-soo, the former vice mayor of Busan arrested over bribery charges.

The 55-year-old Yoo was under surveillance of a special inspection team of Cheong Wa Dae over allegations that he took bribes from businesses when he served as director-general of the Financial Services Commission in 2017.

But Yoo avoided punishment for an unknown reason and became Busan's vice mayor in charge of economic affairs in 2018.

The raid appears to zero in on Cho Kuk, the former top presidential secretary for civil affairs and disgraced former justice minister who is under a separate prosecution probe over family-related allegations.

The prosecution is looking into allegations that Cho and other former Cheong Wa Dae officials may be behind the sudden end of the inspection into Yoo.

In February, a former special inspector filed a petition with the prosecution against Cho, claiming the surveillance was abruptly suspended despite alleged wrongdoings by Yoo.

sooyeon@yna.co.kr
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