A woman accused of drowning her husband in 2019 in exchange for a sizable life insurance claim was given a life sentence on Thursday by a court.
Her accomplice, who was also her boyfriend, received a 30-year prison term.
The sentences were handed down by the Incheon District Court to Lee Eun-hae, 31, and Cho Hyun-soo, 30, her extramarital partner. Both were ordered to wear electric tracking devices for 20 years after serving their sentences.
The two were charged with encouraging the woman’s husband, who was 39 at the time, to plunge into a deep valley river in Gapyeong, 60 kilometres east of Seoul, in June 2019, despite the fact that he was unable to swim, and then letting him drown.
The two were also accused of attempting to kill the husband that year by poisoning him with puffer fish toxin in February and trying to drown him at a fishing place in May.
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Prosecutors had earlier demanded life imprisonment for both on the conclusion that they premeditated the crimes for 800 million won (US$563,976) of death benefit payable to Lee upon the husband’s death.
The court rejected prosecutors’ charges that they “gaslighted” the husband and predetermined the river diving directly resulted in the husband’s death, ruling instead that the death constitutes murder by nonfeasance because they did not help the victim when he drowned.
“Seeking the 800-million-won death benefit, they had attempted to murder the victim twice and failed, but they remained undeterred and ultimately completed the murder,” the court said.
“From the initial investigation stage, the accused only tried to cover up their crimes and have never had sincere remorse or repentance,” the court noted.