Korea: May 24, 2004


Four star general Shin Il Soon was found guilty of embezzlement by a court martial. He was ordered to repay the $92,000, as well as a fine of $17,000. The prosecutor had asked for five years in jail, but by just being fined, general Shin can stay in the army, or at least, it appears, retire with his pension intact. General Shin is the third highest ranking officer in the South Korean military. He arrest and trial is a great embarrassment for the military. The embezzlement was actually an old practice in the army, where a "slush fund" was made available for senior officers to use for official parties and gifts to subordinates. But there is more blatant corruption in the military, and the government in general. These corrupt practices, traditional or otherwise, have become a major political issue. Politicians and officials are running for cover. General Shin didn't run fast enough.


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