[인터뷰-2] Why are you hiring high-ranking officials in the legal profession?
Provision of reasonable wages according to practical advice
“There are more advisors besides the ones mentioned”
“If you want to lobby illegally, would you give me an official seat?”
Major shareholder, I have no personal acquaintance with this branch
“Please fact-check… It’s frustrating that I can’t show you what’s inside”
In the end, Gyeonggi Governor Lee Jae-myung is the final destination for various allegations raised by politicians about ‘Hwacheon Daeyu Asset Management’. The reason that a private operator was able to make huge profits through the Pangyo Daejang development project in Seongnam-si, Gyeonggi-do was due to the assumption that it would not have been possible without the help of Governor Lee Jae-myung, who was the mayor of Seongnam.
Some say that the fact that Hwacheon Daeyu recruited high-ranking legal professionals and hired their children as employees was also the purpose of lobbying for Seongnam City. The fact that former journalist Kim, who is the major shareholder of Hwacheon Daeyu, interviewed Governor Lee Jae-myung seven months before the announcement of the project, also amplified these suspicions.
Lee Seong-moon (54), CEO of Hwacheon Daeyu, strongly denied allegations of political lobbying or the possibility of improper solicitation through high-ranking legal figures. He said, “The major shareholder, Mr. Kim, recruited him as a personal acquaintance, asked for legal advice, and paid a fair salary. raised
Regarding the claim that the truth of the allegations of political lobbying should be revealed through investigation, CEO Lee said, “I can assure you that there will be no illegal transactions between Hwacheon Daeyu and politicians and public officials even if the investigation is conducted 100%.” “The private company is getting caught up in a political battle with reports and allegations that do not reveal the facts,” he said.
Regarding the reason why he joined the interview, CEO Lee said, “The major shareholder of Hwacheon Daeyu is Mr. Kim, who is a senior at university, but he has never been involved in management. . After graduating from Sungkyunkwan University Law School, CEO Lee worked as a lawyer.
The Hankook Ilbo reports an interview with CEO Lee Seong-moon twice. Until now, the position of Hwacheon Daeyu has not been known in detail, so we decided to publish the representative’s position as much as possible. Following the report on the 19th, which delivered a position on various controversies surrounding Hwacheon Daeyu’s development project, on the 20th, we will deliver a position on the lobbying allegations raised by the recruitment of prominent legal figures. Reports verifying the claims of CEO Lee Seong-moon and reports on allegations that are still unresolved will be published later.
“It’s just people who are friendly, there’s no closeness.”
So far, there have been three exposed legal figures who have served as advisors or advisors at Hwacheon Daeyu. Former Suwon District Prosecutor Kang Chan-woo acted as a lawyer when Lee Jae-myung was investigated for violating the Election Act as a motive for the Judicial Research and Training Institute. Former Supreme Court Justice Kwon Soon-il was one of 12 Supreme Court Justices when the Supreme Court decided to reverse and remand Governor Lee Jae-myung’s case for violating the election law in July last year. After retiring in October of the same year, former Supreme Court Justice Kwon was recruited as an advisor to Hwacheon Daeyu. Former Special Prosecutor Park Young-soo, who oversaw the investigation into Choi Seo-won (former Choi Soon-sil), served as an advisor to the company for one year before the appointment of the special prosecutor.
Politicians’ names go up and down. All that has been revealed so far are opposition figures. Yoo Won-cheol, former chairman of the Future Korea Party, who was sentenced to one year and six months in prison last July for taking back money, worked as an advisor to Hwacheon Daeyu. It was revealed that Kwak Sang-do, the son of People’s Strength lawmaker, had served at Hwacheon Daeyu for six years. Based on this, Governor Lee Jae-myung argues that the Daejang-dong development project is not a ‘Lee Jae-myung gate’ but a ‘people’s power gate’.
– Former Supreme Court Justice Kwon Soon-il, former Special Prosecutor Park Young-soo, and former District Prosecutor Kang Chan-woo are hard to believe as experts in the real estate and finance fields. I don’t think you have a high level of understanding of the development project, but why did you have to hire it?
“It’s because of the relationship with the major shareholder Kim, who has been working as a legal reporter for a long time. The relationship with them has been long since Kim entered as a legal reporter. How could he have recruited such famous people without them? neither more nor less.
Although they are not real estate experts, they have provided a lot of practical legal advice regarding Seongnam Garden. (※ Seongnam Ui Garden is a special purpose corporation established for the Daejang-dong development project, and is leading the implementation of the Hwacheon Daeyuga project, which was in charge of asset management.) It was when I decided to recruit a former Supreme Court justice, and I was introduced to it. (※ As the residents demanded the underground power transmission tower in the north side of the Daejang District, Seongnam City ordered the establishment of an implementation plan, and Seongnam Courtyard, which incurs an additional cost of about 100 billion won, is in the process of an administrative lawsuit against Seongnam City) I also went to the Supreme Court Justice Seocho-dong office 4 times.
Former Prosecutor Kang Chan-woo also remembers being consulted about the criminal prosecution case right away. He provided practical legal advice. Former Special Prosecutor Park Young-soo, who joined in the summer of 2015 and was at Hwacheon Daeyu before the appointment of the special prosecutor of the National Government Nongdan, has served as the chairman of the board of directors of Woori Financial Group in the past, so he is well-versed in the financial sector. He gave advice on project financing (PF, financing), the banking sector, government culture, and establishing relationships with people there. He went to work at the Hwacheon Daeyu office twice a week.
Our employees know well that these people worked hard. It is common in the real estate industry for real estate developers to have legal advice or advisors.”
– Former Future Korea Party Chairman Yoo Won-cheol, who is not from the legal profession, also served as an advisor.
“The former CEO, Won, is a senior in high school for the major shareholder, Mr. Kim. He has been in Yeouido for a long time and has a lot of experience dealing with many people, so I know that Mr.
– How much did you pay them as salaries?
“Considering social credit (status), former Supreme Court Justice Kwon and former Special Prosecutor Park gave about 15 million won a month and 200 million won as an annual salary, and former Prosecutor Kang remembers that it was several million won a month. It must have been around 10,000 won. Everyone did a job that was commensurate with that. It wasn’t like they didn’t work and got paid.”
– Former Supreme Court Justice Kwon Soon-il and former Prosecutor Kang Chan-woo are related to Governor Lee Jae-myung’s violation of the election law. Former Special Prosecutor Park Young-soo is also classified as a lawyer who has a close relationship with passport officials. This is why there are rumors that Hwacheon Daeyu was trying to use the contacts of Governor Lee Jae-myung during the business process.
“It’s absurd. Lee’s charges regarding the Daejang-dong development project have already been acquitted in the first and second trial, and the acquittal was overturned in the Supreme Court in the case of ‘forced hospitalization of his brother’. Still, the reason why former Supreme Court Justice Kwon was in the Supreme Court’s all-inclusive body It is impossible to claim that it has anything to do with the Daejang-dong project. Is it that he made guilt acquittal and acquittal guilty? After the Chuseok holiday, I plan to accept my resignation on the 23rd of this month. I repeat, the others, including former Supreme Court Justice Kwon, came purely because of their close relationship with the major shareholder.”
-Even if Mr. Kim offered the advisory position because of his close acquaintance, he should have rejected it, as there could be rumors about Governor Lee Jae-myung.
“It seems like a nuance that he was thinking about lobbying for a relationship, but it’s really frustrating that he can’t show his insides. If Governor Lee Jae-myung is acquitted even though former Supreme Court Justice Kwon and the major shareholder Kim are not close, the logic of recruiting Bo Eun-seong would make sense. However, the two have been friends for a long time. If they had tried to solicit or lobby through the recruits, they would not have given them an official position as an advisor, but secretly paid back money. only that
The same goes for the golf photos mentioned in the press. We don’t play golf two or three times a year while we’re friends. Calling it a ‘golf meeting’ is nonsense. (※ In 2019, a photo of Lee Seong-moon and Kim with former Prosecutor Kang Kang was posted on the Taekwang CC website in Yongin-si, Gyeonggi-do, but was deleted)”
-Are there only 4 people who are advisors or advisors?
“There are others. Mostly, they are high-ranking prosecutors, and they have long been close friends with the major shareholder, Mr. Kim in Seocho-dong.”
– Can you reveal who you are here? There is little chance that it will be revealed anyway through media reports later.
“It’s difficult. You can’t reveal your name or say anything without their consent. Even if it turns out later, that’s a problem.”
– It is also controversial that the children of legal figures joined Hwacheon Daeyu.
“In August 2016, I hired the daughter of former special prosecutor Park Young-soo, and it was around the time when the compensation work began in earnest. I saw it. That’s how I was introduced. Last month, regardless of this case, I quit for personal reasons.
Rep. Kwak Sang-do is also the major shareholder, Mr. Kim and my university seniors. When Rep. Kwak resigned as chief of civil affairs at the Blue House, we were hiring staff, and Kwak’s son was also graduating. Before Rep. Kwak became a member of the National Assembly at the time, what would we expect of him?
They also posted job postings. At that time, there were only three employees: me, a managing director, and a regular employee, before the office even opened. (※Currently, there are a total of 14 employees of Hwacheon Daeyu) Kwak’s son had no experience in development work, so he worked for 2.5 million won a month as a deputy director. I worked until March of this year and resigned for personal reasons.
Aside from these two, there are no other celebrity children. There was also a suspicion that Governor Lee Jae-myung’s son went to Cheonhwadongin, but it has already been resolved.”
“If I had a relationship with Governor Lee Jae-myung, I would have gone to private development.”
Throughout the interview, CEO Lee Seong-moon said that Hwacheon Daeyu had no relationship with Governor Lee Jae-myung and that he recruited high-ranking officials from the legal profession, but that ‘they gathered only as acquaintances with the major shareholder, Mr. Kim.’ However, there are also suspicions that Mr. .
In July 2014, seven months before the announcement of a public offering for the Daejang-dong project was published, Mr. Kim, who was the head of the legal team for Money Today, interviewed the governor, who was then the mayor of Seongnam. It is unusual for a reporter in charge of legal affairs to interview the head of a local government rather than a reporter from the political department or Seongnam.
– It is rare for a legal reporter to interview the head of a local government. Maybe it was because Kim had an acquaintance with Governor Lee Jae-myung.
Some say that Kim’s interview with this governor must have been a close friendship, but if the two were close and had a money relationship, this governor would have helped Kim’s business in Daejang-dong right away. Mr. Kim is a person who has already invested about 8 billion won in Daejang-dong from 2012 to 2014, when it was promoted as a private development, but suffered a huge loss as the governor turned the Daejang-dong project to public development. If we had been acquainted, shouldn’t Kim have asked the governor to continue as a private project?
Above all, Mr. Kim was not involved in the detailed management of Hwacheon Daeyu. He never came to the office once a week. The management was led by me, and I am not familiar with this branch.”
– There are criticisms that it violates professional ethics just because an incumbent reporter led a for-profit business that generated huge profits.
“I think it’s intellectual from a moral point of view.”
-Have you ever contacted Hwacheon Daeyu from Governor Lee Jae-myung or from the camp since the controversy? This branch might be curious about the internal situation of Hwacheon Daeyu.
“We didn’t know each other from the beginning, so we never received any inquiries. Mr. Kim doesn’t even know anyone directly with the person.”
-In order to resolve the suspicion of preferential treatment related to the project, shouldn’t Hwacheon Daeyu disclose the business contract signed with Seongnam Urban Development Corporation? The Seongnam City Council has also requested the disclosure for several years.
“They say no because the project is still in progress. At this point, if we disclose the plan, we will be drawn into the political struggle between the ruling and opposition parties. It is difficult to disclose it because it is believed that they will use the problem as an excuse to use it as a means of strife.”
– The last thing I want to say is.
“I don’t want Hwacheon Daeyu to be judged that it made huge profits through immoral business without fact-checking. Some criticize it as a ‘pop and swim’ business, but we have to take into account that we took all the business risks. Finally, there has been no collusion with public officials or politicians or any misconduct. The investigation will reveal everything.”
Choi Da-won reporter [email protected]
Tae-seok Yoon reporter [email protected]
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