World
Korea ferry captain arrested, divers enter ship
Publish Date: Apr 18, 2014
Korea ferry captain arrested, divers enter ship
South Korean rescue members carry the body of a passenger aboard a capsized ferry. Photo by AFP
  • mail
  • img
newvision

JINDO, April  - The captain of a South Korean ferry that capsized three days ago was reportedly arrested early Saturday, as divers overcame strong currents and near zero visibility to enter the submerged vessel for the first time.
 
A team of police and prosecutors had sought on Friday arrest warrants for Lee Joon-Seok, 52, and two of his crew without specifying charges, the coastguard had said, after the incident that left 28 people confirmed dead and another 268 still missing.
 
On Saturday the Yonhap news agency reported that Lee was in custody and faced five charges, including negligence of duty and violation of maritime law.
 
Yonhap said a local court in Mokpo had issued arrest warrants for him and two other crew members, citing the possibility that they may flee or destroy evidence.
 
Earlier, prosecutors said Lee had handed the helm to his third officer before the ferry capsized.
 
Three days after the sinking, relatives were clinging to increasingly slim hopes that some may have survived in air pockets.
 
The unfolding tragedy was compounded by the apparent suicide of a high school vice principal who had been rescued from the 6,825-tonne Sewol that sank Wednesday morning with hundreds of his students trapped inside.
 
The breakthrough by dive teams in finally accessing the ship came more than 48 hours after the 6,825-tonne Sewol went down -- a delay that has incensed the relatives of those still unaccounted for.
 
After several attempts, two divers managed to pry open a door and enter the cargo section on Friday afternoon, a senior coastguard official said.
 
Hours later another two-man team accessed one of the cabins, but found nothing.
 
"The search operation will continue through the night," the official said.
 
"Visibility is almost non-existent. You can hardly see your hand in front of you face," said one diver when he returned to the harbour at nearby Jindo island.
 
Of the 475 people on board the Sewol, only 179 were rescued and no new survivors have been found since Wednesday.
 
 
AFP

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Pope Francis to focus on poor in S. America trip
Pope Francis makes his first South American trip in two years Sunday, for an eight-day tour of Ecuador, Bolivia and Paraguay....
Libya magnet for jihadists from Tunisia and beyond
Lawless Libya has become a magnet for radical militants who receive weapons training in jihadist camps before launching deadly attacks in other countries, like last week''s beach massacre in Tunisia....
A French judicial probe has found a series of "tragic" errors caused an Air Algerie plane to crash in the Malian desert last year....
Mass killings may be contagious - US study
Mass killings in the US may be contagious, according to a study that found each deadly tragedy can increase the likelihood that another will soon follow....
Two years after Morsi, Egypt stuck in turmoil
Two years after the army deposed president Mohamed Morsi, Egypt is roiled by brazen Islamic State group attacks in the Sinai Peninsula....
No racial motivation in US church fires
FIRES at six African-American churches in the southern United States do not appear to be linked or racially motivated, officials said...
Do you think Ugandan graduates are the worst in the region?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter