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Pastor detained after bail revoked over terms violation

Jun Kwang-hoon (Yonhap)
Jun Kwang-hoon (Yonhap)

A South Korean pastor who leads a church at the center of an explosive coronavirus resurgence was detained again on Monday after the court accepted prosecutors’ motion to revoke his bail.

Rev. Jun Kwang-hoon was taken back into custody shortly after the Seoul Central District Court said, without elaborating, that he had violated the two-part conditions of his bail, which mandated him not to get involved in any protest that was illegal or linked to his case pending the court ruling.

Prosecutors asked the court to revoke his bail after he took part in an anti-government protest at Gwanghwamun Square on Aug. 15, which police described as illegal. There he also made political statements that could be seen as related to his case in court, where he is accused of violating the election law and defaming President Moon Jae-in.

The massive rally on Aug.15 was later identified as a major source of a virus infection cluster, with 530 confirmed cases so far. Jun himself tested positive afterwards and was hospitalized until Wednesday.

After the rally, Jun faced accusations that he broke his self-isolation order and that he gave authorities an inaccurate list of members of his Sarang Jeil church in Seoul. Before the rally, a virus breakout was detected among congregants and the church has become the second-largest COVID-19 cluster in the country.

“The country is becoming totalitarian,” Jun told reporters on his way to the detention center, taking another jab at President Moon. 

By Choi Si-young (siyoungchoi@heraldcorp.com)
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