State panel lowers level of disciplinary action for Cho Kuk

SEOUL, A state appeal committee has lowered the level of disciplinary action against former Justice Minister Cho Kuk, who was fired by Seoul National University (SNU) as law professor in June last year after a court sentenced him to a two-year prison term on charges of using his influence to get academic favors for his children, informed officials said Wednesday. The Appeal Commission for Educators under the Ministry of Education reached a ruling last Wednesday to lower the disciplinary measure against Cho by one notch to "dismissal," paving the way for him to receive full severance pay from the state-run university, the officials said. Under the SNU disciplinary committee's decision to fire Cho, he will not receive part of his severance pay. The appeal commission's decision is also expected to reduce the period during which Cho cannot be reappointed as professor from five years to three years. But Cho's lawyers said he intends to file an administrative lawsuit refusing to accept any disciplinary action a gainst him. Source: Yonhap News Agency