Prosecution to demand up to death penalty for drug crimes targeting minors

Prosecutors will demand up to the death penalty for those supplying minors with drugs, the Supreme Prosecutors Office said Sunday, amid a sharp rise in the number of minors caught for drug offenses.

According to the prosecution, the number of adolescent drug offenders rose 304 percent to 481 last year from 119 in 2017, compared with a 30 percent increase in the total number of drug offenders during the same period.

In particular, a recent drug scam targeting minors shocked South Korean society, in which drug-laced beverages were handed out to teenage students in Seoul's southern Gangnam Ward with false labels claiming they were intended to enhance memory and concentration.

On Sunday, the top prosecutors' office said that it will demand up to the death penalty or life imprisonment for those caught for providing minors with drugs, using minors in the distribution of drugs or taking drugs together with minors.

All those caught for drug crimes involving minors will also be investigated while under physical detention, it said.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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