South Korean fugitive sentenced to 5 months for burglary

Taipei-A South Korean man has been sentenced to five months in prison for breaking into the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) headquarters and stealing over NT$90,000.

In the ruling in late October, the Taipei District Court said the sentence could be commuted to a fine of NT$150,000 (US$4,984) and the defendant could appeal the verdict.

Cho Jun-ki is currently under custody and can choose to pay the fine and return to South Korea, but if he is unable to pay the fine then he would have to serve out the sentence before he can return home.

Cho was found guilty of breaking into the DPP headquarters on Aug. 1 and stealing a sum of money in two different currencies that amounted to NT$95,316.

The same day, Cho fled to Japan but was denied entry, according to the court. On Aug. 3, he took a flight back to Taiwan, where he managed to evade immigration by climbing over a barrier in a restricted area, the court said.

For three days, Cho was on the run, hiding in hotels and in remote areas until the police received a tip-off and found him in an empty house in New Taipei's Wulai District, according to the court.

In court, Cho pleaded guilty and said he hoped to be allowed to return to South Korea as soon as possible because his actions had resulted in his child being taunted.

Taking into consideration Cho's guilty plea, his financial status, level of education and the fact that he expressed remorse, the court gave him a five-month sentence, commutable to a fine.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel