Prosecutors to use foreign language warrants for foreign criminals

SEOUL, Foreign criminals being detained or arrested in South Korea will be presented with a warrant written in their own language under a government bid to prevent discrimination against aliens in legal proceedings, prosecutors said Wednesday.

The Supreme Prosecutors' Office (SPO) said that prosecutors will use an arrest warrant translated into one of 15 major foreign languages before detaining or arresting foreign criminals to protect them against any discrimination in the investigation and trial procedures.

The SPO said it has completed the translation of its official forms of detention, arrest and search and seizure warrants and the names of 60 major criminal offenses into 15 foreign languages, including English and Chinese, and will distribute them to local prosecutors' offices nationwide during this month. The office chose the 15 languages because each of them have more than 10,000 native speakers registered in South Korea.

The 13 other foreign languages are Japanese, Vietnamese, Filipino, Mongolian, Thai, Cambodian, Indonesian, Uzbek, Sri Lankan, Myanmar, Pakistani, Nepali and Bangladeshi.

The SPO also said it will push for a more systemic management of interpreters by local prosecutors' offices so that they will accompany prosecution investigators to the scene of detention or arrest of foreign criminals.

SPO officials said they expect the new measures to help better protect the human rights of foreigners and elevate the nation's international status as a lawabiding country.

According to prosecution data, 36,277 foreign criminals were detained here in 2017, accounting for 1.9 percent of the nation's entire detentions that year.

Source: Yonhap news Agency

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