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UPDATE: SOUTH KOREA

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UPDATE: SOUTH KOREA 03/09/98 Richard Choi, a Korean-American journalist for a Los Angeles radio station who was arrested in mid-December…

UPDATE: SOUTH KOREA

03/09/98

Richard Choi, a Korean-American journalist for a Los Angeles radio station who was arrested in mid-December in South Korea after broadcasting a report about the financial troubles of a South Korean company, was found guilty of damaging the prestige of a rival news organization through a false report and fined $2,000 in late February by a criminal court in Seoul. He could be sentenced to as many as five years in prison for the conviction.

“The defendant reported on the rumored bankruptcy and merger of a rival company. He deserves punishment because the false report caused damage to the concerned newspaper,” Judge Hwang Chan-hyun said, according to the Associated Press.

Authorities arrested Choi after he alleged in a story broadcast on the privately-owned Radio Korea in Los Angeles that Hankuk Ilbo, a Korean newspaper, was in financial trouble and faced a possible takeover by the Hyundai Corporation.

Hankuk Ilbo, which also owns a rival radio station in Los Angeles, filed a complaint with the Korean government alleging that Choi violated a Korean law prohibiting reporting rumors that might threaten a company’s economic stability. (South Korea v. Choi; Media Counsel: Angela Oh, Los Angeles)