"New Extradition Treaty with Korea Nets First Wanted Felon"
Representatives from the Los Angeles Police Department and the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office
Press Conference to Announce Arrest of Dangerous Fugitive as a Result of U.S./Korea Extradition Treaty
150 North Los Angeles Street, Los Angeles
Tuesday, October 30, 2001
Los Angeles: In September 1996, Detective Maureen Ryan Correa, Robbery-Homicide Division (RHD), Rape Special Section, began an investigation of several rape/robberies that were occurring in the Koreatown community of Los Angeles. It was determined that members of a Korean gang known as "Last Generation Korean Killers" (LGKK) were responsible for the crimes. Their crime spree included what first appeared to be common street robberies, but were actually a part of a complex conspiracy. The case was presented to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office where Deputy District Attorney Michael Carter secured a 43 count grand jury indictment on seven LGKK members, including the leader, Hyun Gu "Eddie" Kang in August 1997.
Investigators assigned to the Department’s RHD, conducted a painstaking investigation into this matter, resulting in the arrest of all known suspects. The suspects were brought to trial in November 1998. The trial lasted until February 1999, resulting in the conviction of Kang, and his co-defendants, on numerous felony counts. All of the defendants, at sentencing, faced possible life sentences. Immediately after his conviction, Kang posted a two and one-half million-dollar bond. He subsequently fled to Korea to avoid imprisonment. A warrant for Kang’s arrest was issued on June 14, 1999.
On December 20, 1999, the United States of America entered into an extradition treaty with the Republic of Korea. In October 2000, Kang was arrested in Korea on Drug charges and the Korean authorities notified the United States Government. In light of the signed extradition treaty between the two nations, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, aggressively pursuing this case, initiated extradition proceedings with the Republic of Korean Government.
The Korean authorities agreed to extradite Kang and after more than two years on the run, Kang was returned to the United States by U.S. Marshals on October 29, 2001. It is believed that he is the first person extradited under the newly enacted treaty. He was turned over to the custody of the Los Angeles Police Department and the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
Kang was sentenced, in absentia, to 271 years to life in prison and will be remanded to the California Department of Correction on October 31, 2001. This press release was prepared by Public Information Officer Guillermo Campos, Media Relations Section, 213-485-3586.