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S. Korean President's Son Indicted

The son of South Korean President Kim Dae-jung has been indicted on charges of accepting bribes and evading taxes. Fifty-three-year-old Kim Hong-up is the second son of the president to be indicted on corruption charges in less than two months.

South Korean prosecutors charged Kim Hong-up Wednesday of taking more than $2 million in bribes from businessmen in exchange for peddling influence among government officials.

They also accuse the president's second-oldest son of accepting cash gifts totaling $1.8 million from some of the country's largest conglomerates and then laundering the money to evade taxes.

Prosecutors say Mr. Kim also received more than $20,000 in pocket money from the heads of South Korea's intelligence service.

Kim Hong-up has been in jail since his arrest on June 21. His younger brother, Kim Hong-gul, was arrested a month earlier on bribery charges and is now on trial. The brothers admit that they received money from businessmen but deny allegations of bribery.

President Kim has repeatedly apologized to the nation for the scandals. The presidential office Wednesday again expressed what it calls "bottomless regret."

The charges against his sons have deeply embarrassed President Kim, who took office in 1997 vowing to eliminate corruption from South Korean politics. During regional elections last month, disillusioned voters handed Mr. Kim's ruling party crushing losses in most of the significant races.

Mr. Kim is constitutionally barred from seeking another five-year term. Prospects for his party's candidate in the December presidential election are not bright.

Since a deadly sea battle 11 days ago with North Korea, angry South Koreans have been calling on Mr. Kim to scrap his "sunshine policy" of engaging the communist North.

The president, who won the Nobel Peace Prize two years ago for his efforts to improve ties with the North, says his government remains committed to the policy.

But the latest survey shows the opposition presidential candidate winning over voters with his pledge to overhaul the sunshine policy.