My fellow members of the Korean Prosecution Service!
First of all, I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to all of you for fulfilling your duties
despite difficult circumstances.
As you are well aware, the public's call for change in the Service is the greatest than
I stand here today as the Prosecutor General with a heavy sense of responsibility,and I believe
the same goes for the rest of you.
Now, I am going to brief you on what we are going to do forward.
We should live up to our own mission in any circumstances.
First and foremost, we should concentrate on observing constitutional values,and law and
We should also apply strict standards in investigating corruption cases and structural
irregularities in society.
In all the processes of the investigation, we should adhere to due process and
arrive at a fair and unbiased conclusion so that we can build the public trust.
Furthermore, we should defend the human rights of every citizen who needs our help while
protecting rights of crime victims and the socially disadvantaged.
Accomplishing the commitments we have made, we should reassure our citizens.
Recently, however, the public trust on the Service is very low.
As we all know, the reasons behind the result include internal corruption, lack of political
neutrality, unruly investigation, and attitude with little reflection.
I believe the time has come to reform the prosecution.
To this end, I would like to present the following three directions.
First, let us pursue "transparency" in the prosecution.
We should make all the investigations, decision-making processes and conclusions
free of doubt. If a question is raised, we will correct it immediately.
For resolving cases, collecting evidence quickly based on evidence law and legal principles is
prerequisite to drawing the right conclusion. For the purpose, I will take the initiative
in observing the prosecution's political neutrality and independence.
In the meantime, I would like to strengthen a system to listen to
and respect the opinions of the public and professionals so that we can carry out independent
and unbiased investigation with no or less excess.
We let the public know about all investigation processes even after the investigation is closed, if necessary.
I hope that recovering trust from the citizens, we will be confident to justify the principle and
spirit of Criminal Procedure Act, which stipulates that only prosecutors can engage in
prosecution investigation and decision.
Moreover, we will expand the scope of investigation record accessible to the public even after
the close of investigation to remove all the doubts and inconvenience raised unnecessarily.
Second, let us endeavor to gain reputation as "upright prosecution."
Above all, I believe we should inspect and investigate internal corruption in a more strict
manner, and even be determined to have investigation results reviewed externally.
Besides, let's remove all the faults and errors on our investigation processone by one.
We should conduct effective and refined investigation focusing more on collecting physical
evidence rather than Q&A typed statement while investigating, strictly, not harshly,and
ceaselessly, not mercilessly. It helps make even the person under investigation
understand what we do.
I am certain that such a rapid process will contribute to protecting human rights of the public.
Furthermore, let's provide our citizens with a high-quality criminal justice service through a
system that prosecutors and investigators, who work hard in silence, can strengthen expertise
and get credit for the work as much as the luxurious brand.
Let's go back to check whether there are any existing systems or practices causing excessive
inconvenience to both the public and us.
Third, let us become "open-minded Prosecution."
We should listen carefully to those involved in cases to avoid accusing them falsely.
We should also tune in on voices of judicial police officers, those working at court, and
attorneys, who all are directly related to our work.
Those working in criminal justice are our partners and collaborators in protecting the national
community from all crimes.
We need to first consider what would be the most effective way in achieving common goals of
safety, happiness, and preservation of human rights of the community.
Then, let's go into it with an open mind.
We should be also open-minded to our co-workers.
To that end, we need to change our culture from vertical to horizontal first.
It means we turn our culture into more flexible one in which junior staff do not need to hesitate to express their opinions while seniors respect them, and various voices are openly accepted.
I will take the lead in listening to the voices of our citizens, partners, and the members.
With that, let's move one step closer to the public so that the public can be impressedby our
efforts for the change.
My fellow members!
We should put efforts together to accomplish the abovementioned goals of “becoming
transparent, upright, and open-minded prosecution."
I am pretty sure that the efforts will help us identify who we are with much greater
support from our citizens.
Once again, I will change myself first before asking you to change.
Your passion and dedication will inspire us.
Thank you very much!
July 25, 2017
Republic of Korea