S. Korean prosecutors to seek arrest warrant for Park

Opponents of ousted President Park Geun-hye stage a massive rally in central Seoul

Opponents of ousted President Park Geun-hye stage a massive rally in central Seoul

Prosecutors said in a statement they had "concluded that it is in line with the laws and principles to seek an arrest warrant".

Park was impeached by parliament in December, as the scandal combined with mounting economic and social frustrations to trigger huge candlelit demonstrations. She argues she has never colluded with her confidante Choi Soon-sil for personal gains, but from a legal point of view, the request for her arrest looks inevitable.

The scandal that brought down Park has dominated South Korean politics for months.

"A lot of evidence has been collected so far but as the suspect denies most of the criminal allegations against her, there is a possibility of her destroying evidence", the prosecution said in a statement.

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Amid massive street protests, Park was ousted as the Constitutional Court decided March 10 to uphold her parliamentary impeachment.

Prosecutors questioned Park for 14 hours last Tuesday after she lost her presidential immunity following her ouster.

A South Korean court will hold a hearing on ousted leader Park Geun-hye's arrest warrant on Thursday. Prosecutors made the decision after interrogating Park during the week of March 20 over charges of bribery, abuse of power, coercion and leaking government secrets.

Lee, who denies the charges that he provided bribes in return for favours for Samsung, and Choi are already in detention and are separately on trial.

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Choi is accused of coercing a total of $70 million from big business on the promise that they would get favorable treatment from Park's government. When they were arrested in February, prosecutors identified former President Park as a criminal accomplice.

"This request for an arrest warrant for Park on bribery and other charges is a historic decision", said Youn Kwan-suk, a spokesperson for the main opposition Democratic Party.

After the hearing, the judge would determine whether to issue an arrest warrant, Yonhap reported.

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