South Korean reporters face legal steps in Denmark

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A judge in Denmark said Wednesday she is strongly considering taking legal steps against South Korean journalists for violating Danish law by filming the daughter of the impeached South Korean president’s confidante inside a courtroom during a detention hearing.

Malene Urup says South Korean reporters filmed and spoke to Yoora Chung on Sunday, hours after her arrest on an international warrant. The interviews eventually were posted on South Korean news media’s websites.

Urup told The Associated Press on Wednesday that reporters were informed in Danish and English “several times” about the ban and asked to delete the videos.

Urup said that she had not decided when or how many would be reported to the police for violating Danish law, adding “we take this very seriously.” The penalty if convicted is a fine.

An eight-minute video of Chung talking to reporters in court was posted on the English-language Korea Times’ website.

Chung is the daughter of jailed Choi Soon-sil, who is suspected of bribery and receiving favors from companies and allowing a friend to manipulate government affairs. Authorities in Seoul are working to extraditing her in connection with a huge corruption scandal.

President Park Geun-hye was impeached last month by lawmakers amid public fury over prosecutors’ allegations that she conspired to allow her confidante to extort companies and control the government.

South Korea had asked Interpol on Dec. 27 to search for Chung because she didn’t return home to answer questions about the scandal. She was arrested in Aalborg, some 220 kilometers (137 miles) north of Copenhagen.

South Korea’s Yonhap News Agency reported that Chung, a former member of the national equestrian team, allegedly took advantage of her mother’s relationship with Park to get unwarranted favors from Seoul’s Ewha Womans University.

Chung is held in detention until Jan.30 — a ruling she appealed but the Western High Court upheld it Tuesday.