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Friday, May 12, 2006

South Korea prosecutors file criminal charges against disgraced cloning scientist
Tom Henry at 12:47 PM ET

[JURIST] South Korean scientist Hwang Woo-Suk [BBC profile] was indicted Friday on charges [JURIST report] of fraud, embezzling research funds and breaching bioethics laws. Hwang announced in 2005 that his research team had created patient-specific stem cell lines along with having produced stem cells from a human embryo. A report [summary] by scientists at Seoul National University [official website] later discredited both claims. The charges originate from research funds totaling more that $2 million that Hwang accepted after making the false claims.

Hwang publicly apologized last year for the false claims but said he was deceived by two subordinate researchers. The scandal embarrassed the administration of South Korean President Roh Moo-Hyun [BBC profile] who had been a supporter of Hwang and resulted in the resignation of science secretary Park Ky-Young. CBC News has more. Chosun Ilbo has local coverage, in English.

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