Fiji prison officers punished over cult ‘favors’

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Fiji prison chiefs said Monday they had punished 11 officers for receiving free meals and other favors from businesses linked to South Korea’s “Grace Road” cult.

Grace Road Church founder Shin Ok-ju prophesied that South Korea would be doomed by famine and disaster, persuading hundreds of followers in 2014 to start a new life in tropical Fiji.

The movement quickly established political and commercial sway there, buying agricultural land and building a network of successful companies.

But it was also dogged by claims of bizarre rituals, and Shin was imprisoned by a South Korean court in 2019 on a string of criminal charges including violence, child abuse and fraud in Fiji.

The Fiji Corrections Office said it had launched an investigation following reports that some of its prison officers had received “favors” from a Suva Remand Centre prisoner, Jung Young Kim.

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