Asia

South Korea chief prosecutor Han Sang-dae resigns

Han Sang-dae Image copyright AP
Image caption Han Sang-dae had been in office for just over a year.

South Korea's chief prosecutor has resigned over a series of corruption scandals that have fuelled tensions in the prosecution service.

Han Sang-dae made a public apology, although he has not been implicated in any of the cases.

In one case an official has been charged with accepting bribes. Another prosecutor is accused of offering a suspect leniency in exchange for sex.

Mr Han's attempts at reform were reportedly opposed by his staff.

Announcing his resignation to the media, Mr Han bowed and said: "I sincerely apologise to the people for causing such a shock and disappointing them with such embarrassing incidents."

He had been in office for just over a year.

Earlier this month, one of the prosecution department's senior staff was indicted on suspicion of receiving more than $800,000 (£499,000) in bribes from a businessman.

Shortly afterwards, a junior prosecutor was accused of having sex with a suspect in return for leniency in questioning her.

The BBC's Lucy Williamson in Seoul reports that the scandals fuelled tensions within the prosecution service, as expectations grew that Mr Han would announce widespread reforms.

His replacement has not yet been named. South Korea holds a presidential election on 19 December.

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