|Justice Minister nominee Han Dong-hoon / Yonhap|
Justice minister nominee Han Dong-hoon again slammed the recently enacted laws on prosecution reform Monday, saying they only serve to shield corrupt politicians from criminal punishment while hurting the interests of ordinary people.
Han, a senior prosecutor considered one of the closest confidants of incoming President Yoon Suk-yeol, made the remarks at the opening of his confirmation hearing, about a week after the promulgation of the legislation centered on reducing and ultimately abolishing the prosecution's investigative powers.
"Public concerns are enormous. ... The laws will make it difficult to punish corrupt politicians and public officials, and the damage the people will suffer in the process is only too apparent," Han told the confirmation hearing.
Last week, the ruling Democratic Party of Korea, which controls the 300-member National Assembly with 171 seats, railroaded the legislation, consisting of revisions to the Criminal Procedure Act and the Prosecutors' Office Act, before outgoing President Moon Jae-in promulgated them
In a previous document submitted to a lawmaker for his confirmation hearing, Han lashed out at the legislation and said he will look for ways to minimize any negative impacts that it could have on ordinary people.
Han also vowed internal efforts to reform and upgrade the prosecution.
"A genuine reform of the prosecution would mean building a system trusted by the public by bringing justice to corruption without giving in to powerful people," he noted.
"I will beef up the prosecution's political neutrality and fairness, and build a system to ensure checks and balances between the prosecution and the police." (Yonhap)