|South Korea’s senior IOC member, Un Yong Kim.(ATR)|| |
(ATR) An appeals court in Seoul has rejected the appeal of suspended International Olympic Committee vice president Un Yong Kim. Kim was found guilty in June of bribery and corruption charges in connection with his presidency of the World Taekwondo Federation and the Korean Olympic Committee.
A Seoul High Court judge took less than five minutes to deny the appeal, but did cut six months off his sentence.
That means Kim, 73, could be freed from jail on the eve of the 2006 Olympics in Turin.
Whether he remains a member of the IOC until then will depend in part on whether his next and final appeal is successful. The case now goes to the South Korean Supreme Court, which could rule in about three months.
Assuming the verdict is upheld on appeal, then the IOC would only have one more chance to expel Kim before his sentence is up. That will come at the IOC Session in Singapore next July. After Singapore, the next scheduled IOC Session would happen in February 2006 on the eve of the Turin Winter Games and literally days after Kim completes his two-year jail term.
Family members say Kim?s health has taken a beating the past eight months he?s been in jail. They are particularly disappointed that consideration was not given to his health in today?s decision by the appeals court.
More news of the week from the world of the Olympics, in the September 17 issue of Around the Rings.com, for subscribers only.