Justice Ministry Braces for Sex Offender's Release from Jail

  • By Pyo Tae-jun

    September 16, 2022 12:19

    Kim Geun-sik
    The Justice Ministry is bracing for the release of a notorious sex offender from prison next month.
    Kim Geun-sik (54) was sentenced to just five years behind bars in 2000 for brutally raping a minor, and right after he was released from prison in 2006, he raped 11 more children from May to August of that year and was sentenced to another 15 years in prison. 
    He qualified for release from prison in September last year, but his sentence was extended after he assaulted a fellow inmate twice.
    Kim is classified as a predatory pedophile, which entails certain restrictions after release including publication of his address on the ministry website. The ministry also set up a special team to monitor his movements on release.
    The ministry also wants to make it legal to isolate child sex offenders for treatment for indefinite periods. The new law would also apply to child rapist Cho Doo-soon (70), who was released from prison in December 2020 after serving just 12 years for the brutal rape and mutilation of an eight-year-old girl.
    Under the current law, sex offenders can be subject to treatment during imprisonment for a maximum 15 years and can only be isolated for treatment if a prosecutor seeks court approval for the measure before the final verdict. Offenders like Kim, who have not been ordered to have treatment, simply have to be released into the community.
    The new law would allow the ministry to seek the isolation and treatment of sex offenders even after their release if they violate parole rules, pose a threat of repeat assaults on minors or display a clear need for treatment for pedophilia. 
    But legal experts warn that this could constitute double jeopardy or violate human rights.
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