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Suspect in fatal dog attack arrested after yearlong investigation

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This photo provided by Namyangju Fire Station Sunday shows the dog that mauled a 59-year-old woman to death in Namyangju, Gyeonggi Province. Courtesy of Namyangju Fire Station
This photo provided by Namyangju Fire Station Sunday shows the dog that mauled a 59-year-old woman to death in Namyangju, Gyeonggi Province. Courtesy of Namyangju Fire Station

A dog farm owner has been arrested and indicted on accidental homicide and other charges in connection with the death of a woman who was mauled to death by one of his dogs on the eastern outskirts of Seoul last year, prosecutors said Wednesday.

The tragic incident occurred May 22 last year, when the 57-year-old victim taking a stroll on a hill in Namyangju, about 20 kilometers east of Seoul, was attacked and killed by a large, mixed-breed dog that had escaped from the suspect's farm. The woman died of excessive bleeding a few hours after the 150-centimeter-long and 30-kilogram dog bit her neck.

At that time, police conducted an extensive investigation to find the dog's owner and found that the 69-year-old suspect was illegally breeding 49 abandoned dogs at a nearby farm. In July, police sought an arrest warrant for the suspect but a local court rejected the request, saying he denied ownership of the killer dog.

The prosecutors in Namyangju, who took over the case from police, have conducted a thorough supplementary investigation into the suspect and relevant figures before arresting and indicting him exactly one year after the incident. The arrest warrant for the suspect was approved by a court May 13.

The dog farm owner was indicted on four charges, which also included violations of the Veterinarians Act and Wastes Control Act, and evidence tampering. Prosecutors said the suspect had injected antibiotics into his dogs without a veterinarian's license and provided food waste to them as food.

The killer dog was captured and euthanized soon after the incident.

The case drew strong media attention amid growing public criticism on attacks by stray dogs on people and other animals.

Prosecutors said they will sternly deal with those caught violating animal farm and safety related regulations to prevent any such dog attack incidents in the future. (Yonhap)





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