The Role of the Public Prosecutor in Korea: Is He Half-Judge?

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Kim, Heekyoon
Issue Date
BK 21 law
Journal of Korean Law, Vol.6 No.2, pp. 163-179
prosecutioninquisitorialjustice of the peacecivil-law traditioninterrogation
Worthy of note is that the Korean prosecutors actually interrogated the suspects and the

prospective witnesses like the French examining magistrate did. Furthermore, they reported the result to the trial courts, and the courts’ decisions were widely based on those reports, as a practical matter.

We might be able to say that, in that sense, the Korean prosecutors might be considered half-judges. It was sometimes argued that the Korean prosecutors had been nearly promoted to the group of examining magistrate. All that happened was due to the practice that gives relatively high credit to the protocols of the prosecutors.

Now, the Judiciary Reform in Korea begins to consider the prosecutor just as the commander of the investigation and, at the same time, as the proper party in an open trial. It means that the true adversarial system will be introduced and tried here. I am curious to see how the prosecutorial office will react in this paradigm shift. Visibly, the prosecutors are well prepared for the change and it would be also a good thing for the prosecutor himself to stop working as the judge.
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College of Law/Law School (법과대학/대학원)The Law Research Institute (법학연구소) Journal of Korean LawJournal of Korean Law Volume 06 Number 1/2 (2006)
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