S. Korea charges 4 with illegally importing N. Korean coal

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — South Korean prosecutors have charged four people with illegally importing North Korean coal via Russia in violation of U.N. sanctions.

Monday’s indictment came four months after customs authorities accused three of the four of using forged documents to illicitly import 35,000 tons of North Korean coal and other minerals worth $5.8 million.

South Korean media say prosecutors have found an additional person implicated in the case during an investigation.

Prosecutors said in a statement that the four people and their five entities were charged with violating a law requiring government approval to bring in North Korean products.

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U.N. sanctions that were toughened in 2017 ban member states from importing North Korean coal and other minerals that had been sources of hard currency for the country.

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