Disgraced former President Roh Tae-woo, the first former South Korean leader to face criminal action for wrongdoing in office, went on trial today on corruption charges.
The 63-year-old former army general, unsmiling and wearing white padded winter clothes with prison No. 1437 stitched on his right chest, was led into a courtroom packed with 200 families and journalists.
Roh, president from 1988 to 1993, faces corruption charges for taking bribes for a $650 million slush fund he established during his five-year term. If convicted, he could be sentenced to 10 years to life in prison.
Roh’s immediate predecessor, Chun Doo-hwan, is also in jail, accused of masterminding a 1979 coup.