Danish prosecution to extradite Chung Yoo Ra
Angela Jung, March 17, 2017, 9:38 a.m.
The Danish prosecution said Friday it decided to extradite the daughter of ousted South Korean President Park Geun-hye's close friend for an investigation into a high-profile scandal that removed Park from office. "It is the assessment of the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions that all conditions to extradite a South Korean woman to her home country are met," the prosecution said in a press release.
Chung Yoo-ra was arrested in the European country's northern city of Aalborg in January as the Korean investigators put her on a wanted list. It was suspected that she received inappropriate academic and financial favors based on her mother's close ties with the former leader.
Still, it is unclear whether she will immediately return home, as she may appeal the decision.
"Chung Yoo-ra has three days to decide whether she will bring the decision by the Director of Public Prosecutions before the Danish courts," the prosecution said. "If that happens, the District Court of Aalborg will be the first instance."
South Korea's independent counsel team that looked into the massive scandal asked Denmark to send Chung home for questioning on a series of alleged wrongdoings. A number of former and current professors at Seoul-based Ewha Womans University have been arrested and indicted in relation to undue favors given to Chung. She has so far refused to voluntarily return home to face the probe.
Her mother Choi Soon-sil, whose alleged irregularities led to Park's ouster, is currently standing trial over suspicions she meddled in state affairs and amassed profits using her ties to the former leader.
The ex-president is now waiting to undergo an interrogation next Tuesday over a string of corruption allegations by state prosecutors, who are looking into issues that remain unresolved by the special counsel team.
"I know that the case has been subject to great attention in South Korea," said Deputy Director Mohammad Ahsan from the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions in Denmark. "I am pleased that there has been a prevalent understanding of the fact that the case has taken the necessary time to handle it both thoroughly and in accordance with our legislation."