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The incidents and accidents of United States Forces Korea (USFK) are occurred frequently these days. They fight with Korean civilians and assault Korean police as well as making a car chases in downtown Seoul.

  We can easily hear from media reports that USFK crimes occur, but we cannot hear quite often how they are actually punished.




  

 Therefore, the Center for Freedom of Information (CFOI) requested information disclosure to the Supreme Prosecutors' Office in order to see the crimes committed by USFK and the actions taken against them.

 

  According to the disclosed data, there were 395 cases reported in 2010, 344 cases in 2011, 283 cases in 2012, and 48 cases reported by February 2013. The number of cases tended to decline every year.

 

 It is the violation of Act on Special Cases concerning the Settlement of Traffic Accidents that occurs mostly frequently. Other than this, the USFK crimes mainly include injuries, violence, theft and injuries on both sides etc.

 

  On the contrary to the decrease of USFK crimes, the violation of the Act on the control of Narcotics such as marijuana, narcotics and psychotropic drugs is increasing every year.




  Then how are the legal actions taken against USFK crimes?

 

  According to the disclosed data, the majority of the incidents are not prosecuted and among the ones prosecuted, most of them were summarily indicted.

 

  The present state of the non-prosecution is as below. The reasons of non-prosecution cases for the past three years showed the predominance of “No rights of arraignment”.

 

<Non-prosecution cases for USFK Crimes>

Unit: Case / Source: Supreme Prosecutors' Office


Year

Total

Cleared of suspicion

 suspension of indictment

Not fall into Crimes

No rights of arraignment

Dismissal

2010

207

12

47

0

148

0

(100%)

(6%)

(23%)

(0%)

(71%)

(0%)

2011

218

15

26

0

177

0

(100%)

(7%)

(12%)

(0%)

(81%)

(0%)

2012

194

9

9

0

175

1

(100%)

(5%)

(5%)

(0%)

(90%)

(1%)

2013(~Feb)

26

0

1

0

25

0

(100%)

(0%)

(4%)

(0%)

(96%)

(0%)

 

  The prosecuted USFK crimes only account for 28% in 2010, 27% in 2011 and 25% in 2012 which all are less than 30%. Furthermore, many of the prosecuted cases are summarily indicted. The cases that actually brought on trial were 3% in 2010, 6% in 2011 and 7% in 2012.

 

 Only less than 10 cases were put on trial during the past three years for the most frequently occurring incidents such as alcohol impaired driving, injuries and theft.

 

<The USFK crimes>


Unit : Case / Source : Supreme Prosecutors' Office

Year

Received case

Disposition

Total

prosecuted

Not prosecuted

Etc.

putting on a formal trial

putting on a summary trial

Cleared of suspicion

suspension of 

indictment

Not fall into Crimes

No rights of arraignment

Dismissal

2010

380

395

12

99

12

47

0

148

0

34

2011

341

344

21

71

15

26

0

177

0

34

2012

294

283

19

51

9

9

0

175

1

19

2013(~Feb)

51

48

5

10

0

1

0

25

0

7

 

  Politicians and civic organizations have raised questions several times to the juridical authorities regarding the low rate of prosecution for USFK crimes. However, the authorities are still generous to the USFK. Recently it was discovered that the seven U.S. military police, who had stirred up controversy after handcuffing civilians, went back to their country under the silent approval of the Korean juridical even before the investigation is over.

 

 Even when USFK commit crimes, the reality does not allow Korean authorities to properly conduct investigation. It is because investigation is difficult due to the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA). Although there has been a call for amending the SOFA after the 2002 deaths of two Korean middle schoolgirls by a U.S. armored vehicle, no particular improvement has been made yet.

 

  According to the report of the U.S. Ministry of Defense, the number of USFK members has increased approximately 10,000 during the past three years. While the number of USFK is increasing, the unfair relationship between Korea and the U.S. is not being improved. Even when the USFK members threaten people with guns in the heart of Korean cities and arrest Korean civilians with handcuffing them, the Korean juridical authorities only study the pleasure of the U.S.

 

  Korea might become a sanctuary for the USFK crimes.

 

  Attached is the entire information disclosed by the Supreme Prosecutors' Office.



주한미군사건_발생_및_처리현황_(2010-2013.2).pdf


 



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