South Korean hunter gets 1 year 4 months’ jail for killing man he mistook for a boar

With low visibility, due to it being night-time, the shooter mistook the victim, a taxi driver who had stopped to urinate, for a boar. ST FILE PHOTO

SEOUL - An appellate court on Thursday upheld a prison term for a hunter who shot and killed a taxi driver, mistaking the victim for a boar.

The 73-year-old professional hunter was sentenced to one year and four months in prison for murder by occupational negligence at an appellate trial in the second criminal appellate division of Seoul Western District Court on Thursday, reducing the sentence by four months from the lower court’s ruling.

The shooting took place at around 8pm on April 29 during a night search of a boar under the admission of the local police authority at Bukhansan in Eunpyeong-gu, north-western Seoul.

With low visibility due to the darkness, the officer mistook the victim urinating off the road for a boar, he said in a police investigation.

The victim in his 70s was shot in his right arm and stomach. The rescue personnel arrived at the spot soon after the officer’s report and moved the victim to a hospital, but the victim died around five hours after being shot.

The appellate court said that the hunter failed to fulfil the duty of care required in his work, saying: “The location (of the incident) was adjacent to the road where cars frequently move, having a subsequent possibility of pedestrian appearance even during night-time.”

The court added that since the defendant is an experienced hunter, he should have done due diligence. The bereaved family wanted to see him punished, it added.

The defendant paid 50 million won (S$53,000) as a deposit for a criminal agreement, which was considered a mitigating factor, according to the ruling. THE KOREA HERALD/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

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