Korean gets life term for drug offense in Philippines
Published : 2013-02-01 20:51
Updated : 2013-02-01 20:51
A South Korean man received life imprisonment from a Filipino local court for selling drugs in Manila, foreign ministry officials here said Friday.
The 52-year-old Korean, surnamed Kim, was found guilty in December 2012 by the Regional Trial Court in Manila for violating a law on drugs after he allegedly tried to sell 10 capsules of ecstasy at a restaurant in the city in 2009, according to the ministry.
Along with the life imprisonment, the court also levied a fine of 500,000 pesos ($12,293) on him.
He was arrested at the scene by officers of the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency who were on a buy-bust operation, the ministry added.
“According to Filipino law, drug traffickers can face the maximum penalty of a death sentence regardless of how much volume of drugs a suspect holds,” said a ministry official dealing with the case.
Protesting against the ruling, however, Kim lodged an appeal, according to the ministry. Citing his lawyers, several Korean community members there argued that the PDEA officials committed wrongdoings during the course of the investigation, including asking him for money and forwarding the case to the prosecution without evidence to prove the allegations.
“Our officials in the consul have been in contact with the local authorities to learn the exact facts about the incident, and called for legitimate treatments for Kim,” said Lee Young-ho, the deputy director-general of the ministry’s Overseas Koreans and Consular Affairs Bureau.
“We will continue to strive for prompt and fair trials to protect his rights.” (Yonhap News)