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Former Moon aide arrested for assaulting secretary

Apr 25,2018
A former aide to President Moon Jae-in was arrested on Monday in Busan for assaulting his secretary.

Kang Seong-kwon, who worked for Moon when he was a lawmaker, was running for head of Busan’s Sasang District Office. After his arrest, the Democratic Party expelled him and withdrew his candidacy.

According to police, Kang got into an argument with his secretary and slapped her. He allegedly grabbed her by the collar and ripped her clothes in the process.

The secretary immediately called police at around 11:35 p.m. on Monday, and Kang was arrested outside his apartment complex. At the time, he was apparently heavily intoxicated and unable to testify.

Shin Yeong-dae, chief of the Sasang District Police, told the JoongAng Ilbo on Tuesday that the secretary accused Kang of sexually assaulting her. She was referred to the Sunflower Center, a government-run organization that provides counseling and assistance to sexual assault victims.

The secretary has not provided further testimony for the case, but Shin said that police will investigate further when she is ready to testify.

Kang worked as Moon’s aide when he was serving in the National Assembly from 2012 to 2016. When Moon was running for president in 2017, he worked on the campaign from Busan, and after Moon was elected, he became an administrative official in the Blue House’s political affairs office.

He served from September 2017 before stepping down in February this year to run for district office head.

After the arrest, the Democratic Party immediately expelled Kang. “We regret that such an embarrassing event occurred close to the June 13 local elections,” a party official said. “We are concerned that it may cause trouble to President Moon and affect the election results.”

The Busan branch of the Democratic Party apologized to the secretary in a statement on Tuesday. It promised to provide her with legal aid.

The party plans to begin searching for a new candidate soon.

BY LEE EUN-JI [shim.kyuseok@joongang.co.kr]