Arrest warrant issued for soldier in deadly shooting spree

SEOUL, July 4 (Yonhap) -- A military court issued a warrant Friday to arrest an enlisted soldier for killing five of his comrades and fleeing a front-line border outpost, the defense ministry said.

The 22-year-old sergeant, surnamed Lim, was indicted on charges of killing his superior officer and four other colleagues after going on a shooting spree on June 21, which also wounded seven others.

He then ran away from the 22nd Infantry Unit in the inter-Korean border county of Goseong, some 250 kilometers east of Seoul, and was captured two days later after a botched suicide attempt.

The military court in Yangyang, near Goseong, said it issued the detention warrant after reviewing the validity of a warrant request filed Thursday by the military prosecution of the Army's 8th Corps.

South Korea's military law stipulates that a soldier on active duty faces capital punishment for killing a superior officer.

Lim was transferred to the headquarters of the 8th Corps. from a military hospital at around noon and attended the court's review session, according to the Army.

"He was immediately put in a military jail there," said an Army officer. "We expect the investigation into him over exactly what happened and his motives to pick up pace."

The sergeant has been recovering from the self-inflicted gunshot wound and faced questioning several times in the hospital.

"We will continue to have him receive necessary treatment in consultation with his doctor. He is now in quite stable condition, having no difficulty speaking and walking."

What prompted Lim, who was to be discharged in September, to go on the rampage has yet to be determined, though he claimed that he had been ignored and ridiculed by his colleagues.

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