Source: (2003) In, Tatsuya Ota, ed., Victims and Criminal Justice: Asian Perspective. Tokoyo, Hogaku-Kenkyu-Kai, Keio University. Pp. 181-196.

In discussing the legal rights of crime victims in Korea, the chapter notes that victims have a right to force criminal justice agencies to begin or suspend investigations. Further, Article 27 of the Constitution mandates a crime victim's right to make a statement in the trial process, although it is rare that this occurs, because the conditions or procedures necessary for making a statement are not available. During criminal proceedings, victims can request offenders to compensate them for their loss that is directly related to the crime. Regarding victim protection in criminal proceedings, the Penal Code provides for the suppression of the disclosure of confidential information of which the criminal justice personnel is aware. Further legislation stipulates the right of the judge to revoke the bail or the suspension of custody when he/she finds the possibility of additional retaliatory crimes against the victim. In the course of an investigation, however, many crime victims do not trust that they will be protected by the authorities from offender efforts to intimidate and silence them. The Specific Crime Reporter Protection Act passed in 1999 stipulates the duty of the central government to assume responsibility for the protection of crime reporters and the prevention of any retaliatory crime. The chapter concludes with a profile of the crime victim aid program, which is designed to provide financial aid to the bereaved family of a murdered person or a victim who has suffered a serious disability due to a crime. The author concludes that many crime victims still remain outside the umbrella of legal protection in Korea, and the low acceptance rate of applications for crime victim compensation indicates that the victim protection policy in Korea is limited. Abstract courtesy of National Criminal Justice Reference Service,