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South Korea ferry disaster: Son of dead owner of ferry operator denies embezzlement charges

Published on Jul 27, 2014 10:33 PM
A student survivor of South Korea's ferry disaster carries a placard reading "Truth never sinks!" as they march near Parliament in Seoul on July 16, 2014 to press demands by victims' relatives for an independent inquiry into the tragedy that claimed around 300 lives. -- FILE PHOTO: AFP

SEOUL (Korea Herald/Asia News Network) - Yoo Dae Kyoon, the eldest son of Yoo Byung Eun, denied charges of embezzlement on Sunday, as judges are expected to issue an arrest warrant for the junior Yoo, allowing prosecutors to detain him for further questioning.

Police arrested Dae Kyoon on Friday, shortly after officials had confirmed that an unidentified body found last month was in fact that of the senior Yoo. The Yoos had topped the police's most-wanted list for more than 70 days.

With Dae Kyoon in custody, prosecutors are now hoping to discover the extent to which the Yoo family contributed to the ferry accident. The 6,825-tonne ferry Sewol sank in waters off South Korea's south-western coast on April 16, leaving more than 300 dead or missing. Most of those killed were teenagers on a school trip.

Prosecutors said the Yoos contributed to the ferry disaster by misappropriating funds of Chonghaejin Marine Co. that could have been used to strengthen safety standards on the Sewol such as increasing the number of regular emergency drills.

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