A college student who had been sentenced to prison for distributing handouts criticizing Chun during the military days of Chun Doo-hwan was acquitted in a retrial after 40 years.

Seoul High Court Criminal Division 6-1 Division Chief Justice Jo Eun-rae, Chief Justice Kim Yong-ha, overturned the original judgment and acquitted the 63-year-old Mr. A, who was sentenced to one year in prison for violating the martial law.

A was put on trial for making and distributing 260 handouts titled "Let's Overthrow Chun Doo-hwan, the vampire of the nation," over two days in September 1980 while he was in his third year of college.

In 1980, the new military administration of Chun Doo-hwan banned gatherings for political purposes, and made the media, publications, and reports subject to censorship in advance.

You could be arrested and detained without a warrant if you blasphemed the former or current heads of state, or made up or spread rumors.

Mr. A was sentenced to two years in prison at the General Martial Arts Council of the Capital Corps, but was reduced to one year in prison at the appeals court.

After that, the prosecution requested a retrial in April, and the court made a decision to start the retrial, and was acquitted after 40 years.

The court said, "The declaration of martial law in this case is that Chun Doo-hwan and others seized control of the military and national intelligence agencies through a military rebellion and then extended martial law to the whole country by using violent illegal means to seize power. It does not fall under the 'military necessity' stipulated by the Martial Law."

"This declaration of martial law was issued without meeting the requirements stipulated by the Constitution and the law, and its contents are invalid as it is unconstitutional and unconstitutional, infringing on the principle of clarity of warrantism, the principle of criminal justice, and the basic rights of the people guaranteed by the Constitution," he said. said.

(Photo = Yonhap News)