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U.S. Authorities Locate Suspect in Fatal Illinois DUI Case in South Korea

April 17th, 2012 at 10:46 pm

In 1996, Kyung Ho Song was charged with DUI and reckless homicide after he drunkenly plowed into a broken-down station wagon on Lake Street in Bartlett, instantly killing Ecuadoran immigrant Sonia Naranjo. Song told a Cook County court that he was was a shoe store manager making $12,000 annually, and was released after posting a $2,500 bail bond deposit. In reality, Song owned a strip mall, a large home in Schaumburg, and additional commercial property valued at over $1 million. Less than two years after the incident, Song had liquidated all of his assets, withdrawn his guilty plea to the criminal charges, and fled the U.S. for his native South Korea.

Some 15 years later, the Chicago Tribune reporters contacted Cook County authorities about the case that had lain dormant for years. The police resumed their search for Song, and in December, 2011, located him living in Seoul, South Korea. Although law enforcement officials state that they intend to pursue the case, they have not yet taken any action to contact South Korea about extraditing Song. It is unclear at this point whether any extradition efforts would be successful.

As this case illustrates, criminal charges, especially when severe in nature, can follow a person for the rest of his or her life. Song still faces the possibility of extradition and incarceration for a crime committed 15 years ago. Likewise, if you are convicted of a crime, your criminal conviction will become a permanent part of your criminal history in most instances.

If you are charged with any type of crime in Illinois, and especially very serious crimes, you should take every effort to avoid a criminal conviction. In order to have the best chance of avoiding a conviction, contact a top Cook county, Illinois criminal defense attorney for assistance.

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Written by Staff Writer

April 17th, 2012 at 10:46 pm

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