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South Korean scandal grows

5 December 2006

SOUTH KOREA – As reported by the Korea Times: "Prosecutors are questioning two former officials from the Ministry of Culture and Tourism over suspicions that they took bribes from a company issuing state-licensed vouchers used for payouts at video game arcades.

"According to investigators at the Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office, Kwak Young-jin, a former director of the Culture Ministry's cultural industry bureau who now works for the Prime Minister's Office, spent 10 million won ($10,790) to buy shares in Andamiro Entertainment in 2000.

"The company failed in its plan to be listed on the stock market, however, and Kwak was paid 11 million won, prosecutors said.

"Kim Yong-sam, who worked under Kwak at the ministry in the division for game and music content, invested 50 million won in Andamiro on Kwak's advice and was given 47 million won back.

"…Andamiro is one of the 19 companies licensed by the government to issue gambling vouchers. The company's chief executive, Kim Yong-hwan, 47, was arrested Monday for misappropriating about 6 billion won in corporate funds and using some of the money to lobby government officials for business favors…"

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