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
Egypt
AN Egyptian court could sentence deposed president Mohamed Morsi to death Tuesday in the first verdict against the Islamist nearly two years after the army ousted him...
Burundi warns army could be called out over protests
Burundi's government warned Monday it could call out the army if protests escalate over controversial plans by President Pierre Nkurunziza to defy a two-term limit and seek re-election....
Distress call from
The International Organization for Migration said Monday it had received a distress call from a sinking boat in the Mediterranean carrying more than 300 people, with at least 20 people reported dead....
White House fence climber arrested
US Secret Service agents arrested an intruder who scaled the White House fence late Sunday, officials said. The individual was immediately arrested while climbing the fence on the south side of the presidential mansion, Secret Service spokesman Brian Leary said in a statement....
EU ministers headed Monday into crisis talks under pressure to confront people-smuggling gangs, with more than 700 people feared dead in what may be the Mediterranean's deadliest migrant disaster to date....
Zimbabwe evacuates nationals from South Africa
ZIMBABWE is evacuating its nationals caught in anti-foreigner violence that has left scores dead in South Africa...
Should African countries expel South Africans?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter