S. Korean lawmaker gets suspended jail sentence over sexually harassing remarks

07:49, May 26, 2011      

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A South Korean lawmaker accused of making sexually harassing remarks about the country's female broadcasters received a six-month suspended jail sentence on Wednesday.

A group of female TV announcers had filed a lawsuit against Kang Yong-seok on charges of defaming them with his lewd comments, such as suggesting that female announcers should offer sex in return for career advancement.

Kang reportedly made the comments during a dinner meeting with college students last year.

After his remarks were reported by local media, the ruling Grand National Party (GNP) expelled the first-term lawmaker. The Seoul Western District Court sentenced Kang to a six-month prison term, suspended for one year, and said in a verdict that Kang should have borne in mind that as a member of the National Assembly he has more considerable influence on the public than others.

It marks the first ruling in the country that recognizes expression regarding those of a certain profession as contempt.

If the sentence is finalized at the Supreme Court, Kang will lose his legislative seat. Parliament's ethics committee, meanwhile, will vote Monday on a move to oust him from parliament.

Source: Xinhua
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