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Denmark defers decision on extradition of daughter of woman at center of scandal

Feb. 21, 2017 - 20:43 By 조혜림

AALBORG, Denmark (Yonhap) -- The Danish prosecution on Tuesday deferred a decision over whether to repatriate the daughter of South Korean President Park Geun-hye’s close confidante at the center of a high-profile corruption scandal.

South Korea’s special probe team, led by Independent Counsel Park Young-soo, has requested Denmark to send Chung Yoo-ra, the 21-year-old daughter of Choi Soon-sil, to Seoul so she could be questioned on a series of alleged wrongdoings related to the president.

Chung, who has been held in custody in the European country since last month, has so far refused to voluntarily return home to face a probe. 

Chung Yoo-ra (Yonhap)

The Danish prosecution told the South Korean embassy in Copenhagen that it has yet to reach a final decision on the requested repatriation of Chung, and that it needs more time to pore over documents it has received from the independent counsel team.

The Danish prosecution has asked a court to hold deliberations on an extension of Chung’s detention on Wednesday morning. Chung’s detention is set to end at 9 am on Wednesday.

South Korean investigators suspect that Chung received undue favors in admission to Seoul-based Ewha Womans University and other academic affairs.

A number of professors, including the school’s former President Choi Kyung-hee, have been arrested over their alleged involvement in the irregularities.

Special prosecutors are also looking into whether South Korea’s Samsung Group supported Chung’s equestrian training in return for the government’s backing of its controversial merger of two affiliates in 2015.

The Seoul Central District Court on Friday issued a warrant to formally arrest Lee Jae-yong, the de facto head of the conglomerate, over suspicions of various criminal offenses including bribery.