US Indicts 28 N. Koreans for Money Laundering
Anchor: The U.S. Justice Department has indicted some 30 North Koreans and Chinese nationals for laundering about two-and-a-half billion dollars through the global financial system. The case is regarded as the largest North Korean sanctions violation case charged by the U.S.
Our Bae Joo-yon has more.
Report: Leading U.S. dailies reported Thursday that the U.S. Justice Department charged 28 North Koreans and five Chinese citizens for laundering two-and-a-half billion U.S. dollars through 250 shell companies.
According to The New York Times, the money went to the North’s state-run Foreign Trade Bank(FTB) and was used to support the North's weapons of mass destruction(WMD) program.
The Washington Post called the latest case the largest North Korean sanctions violation case charged by the U.S.
According to The Post, among those charged were two former FTB presidents, Ko Chol-man and Kim Song-ui, two former co-vice presidents of the bank and Han Ki-song, who allegedly operated FTB’s covert branch in Thailand and served in North Korea’s primary intelligence agency.
The Post added that the latest indictment reveals the extent to which the government believes China has facilitated the North’s illicit network. Citing the indictment, it said branches of North Korean banks continue to operate in Beijing and Shenyang even though UN member states are supposed to have expelled such branches since early 2016.
The U.S. reports quoted Michael Sherwin, the acting U.S. attorney for Washington, as saying that through the indictment, the U.S. has signaled its commitment to hamper North Korea’s ability to illegally access the U.S. financial system and limit its ability to use proceeds from illicit actions to enhance its illegal WMD and ballistic missile programs.
Bae Joo-yon, KBS World Radio News.
[Photo : YONHAP News]