Korea Increases the List of Serious Crimes in the Act on Regulation and Punishment of Criminal Proceeds Concealment

The Chair of the Legislation and Judiciary Committee in Korea proposed an Amendment to the Korean Act on Regulation and Punishment of Criminal Proceeds Concealment (hereinafter as “Act on Punishment of Criminal Proceeds Concealment”) on April 4, 2019. Some crimes shall be added to the list of “serious crimes” stated in the aforementioned Act.

Amendment to the Act on Punishment of Criminal Proceeds Concealment

The list of “serious crimes” (also “specific crimes”) as defined in Art. 2 (1) Korean Act on Punishment of Criminal Proceeds Concealment shall be extended with the proposed Amendment. These newly added “serious crimes” shall be subject to a proper punishment under this Act, especially for concealing, disguising and/or exchanging criminal proceeds. In addition, the collection and/or confiscation of such illegally earned proceeds shall be able.

The newly added ‘serious crimes’ under this Act shall be for instance:

  • Confinement, human trafficking, kidnapping, abduction, etc., as well as quasi-fraud and special extortion (Korean Criminal Act);
  • Manipulating the price of goods subject to customs declaration (Korean Customs Act);
  • Exporting the nation’s strategic items without permission from the Korean government (Korean Foreign Trade Act);
  • Divulging and/or using personal information (Korean Act on Promotion of Information and Korean Communications Network Utilization and Information Protection, and the Korean Personal Information Protection Act);
  • Producing and/or selling child or juvenile pornography; recording or photographing a person’s body and/or circulating a video or picture of a person’s body against their will, etc. (Act on the Protection of Children and Youth against Sex Offenses in Korea, and the Act on Special Cases Concerning the Punishment, etc. in Korea);
  • Act by a physician or medical personnel of acquiring any economic benefit from a pharmaceutical company in exchange for the use and/or prescription of its product(s), and the act by a non-medical personnel of establishing a medical institution (Korean Medical Service Act);
  • Acquiring any benefit by obtaining permission for the “conversion of a mountainous district,” building construction, or land development activities in a fraudulent manner (Korean Mountainous Districts Management Act, and the Korean National Land Planning and Utilization Act);
  • Act by an auditor or a certified public accountant of receiving money and/or other valuables in exchange for an illegal favor(s) in relation to their duties (Korean Act on External Audit of Stock Companies, and the Korean Certified Public Accountant Act);
  • Act by an association, as prescribed in the Act on the Improvement of Urban Areas and Residential Environments, that selects a contractor(s) and receives money and/or other valuables in return;
  • Infringing on industrial technology (Korean Act on Prevention of Divulgence and Protection of Industrial Technology); acquiring, using and/or leaking a trade secret(s) for the purpose of using it overseas (Unfair Competition Prevention and Trade Secret Protection Act); and divulging and/or infringing on defense technology (Defense Technology Security Act of Korea);
  • Treating a ‘hazardous chemical’ in an improper manner (Korean Chemicals Control Act);
  • Match fixing and illegal online betting in a sport event (Korean National Sports Promotion Act); and
  • Forming a terrorist group (Act on Counter-Terrorism for the Protection of Citizens and Public Security of Korea).

We shall be updating the reader when more information becomes available.

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