|▲ The Appearance of Law Students Participating in the 21st Criminal Mock Trial (Source: CWNU Waagle)|
On the 2nd, the Department of Law held the "21st Criminal Mock Trial" at the Bonglim District Court, located in Irum Hall of CWNU’s General Education Center. This event has been held every two years since 1983 for law students to effectively integrate theory and practice, and to enhance legal awareness. Also, the event seeks to spread legal culture among university students and citizens. This year's criminal mock trial was held face- to- face for the first time in four years, after the occurrence of the COVID- 19 pandemic. As such, the criminal mock trial has a long history and tradition, providing a special opportunity to indirectly experience trial procedures and methods through entertaining performances. Due to its high synchronization with actual trials, law students can gain in- depth understanding of the legal field and gain practical experience through this event. Not only law students but also the spectators can enhance their understanding of the legal field and raise their interest through a vivid mock trial.
The trial was based on the "Three Mother- Daughter Landlord Fraud Case," which has been making headlines in our society. Under the theme of, "What's Wrong with the Landlord," the mock trial dealt with important legal issues related to a gap investment rental fraud case, conspired with a villa sales agent. The defendant argued that the Housing and Urban Guarantee Corporation (HUG) had designated the villa owner as a "malicious landlord," which put him in a difficult situation, and that the victims had violated his basic rights. Various opinions were exchanged on this matter, but in the trial, the defendant was sentenced to 10 years in prison. This was due to the severity of the rental fraud, which shook the foundation of the lives of the working class and young members of the society, and the fact that the defendant showed no remorse or improvement regarding the incident. Additionally, this year's mock trial was a jury trial, and all the spectators became jury members to express their opinions on guilt and punishment.
In the process of planning and preparing for the criminal mock trial, the law students were in charge of the entire process of writing, directing, and performing, under the guidance and advice of their supervisors and advisors. In particular, the participation and support of representatives and officials from related organizations added significance to the event. Park Hyun- soo, a law student who was in charge of the script, expressed his gratitude, saying, “I sincerely thank the professors and the directing team for filling in my shortcomings and providing me the opportunity to gain experience and develop through the preparation process of the criminal mock trial.” Choi Byung- seon, the student president of the Department of Law, stated, “As rental fraud schemes targeting college students have been on the rise, especially in university one- room villa areas, we hope that this criminal mock trial will deepen university students' understanding and raise their awareness of rental fraud.”
The response of the law students who participated in the trial was very enthusiastic. For them, participating in the criminal mock trial was an opportunity to realize the dreams and ideals that they had been pursuing throughout the process of preparing for university admission. Park Ki- hyun, a law student, said, “While preparing for university admission, I had a desire to participate in the criminal mock trial as a law student, so I am genuinely happy to have this opportunity. Especially during the practice sessions, I could feel the sincerity and earnestness of my dream to pursue justice as a prosecutor.” Through this opportunity, law students seem to have significantly contributed to raising awareness of social issues by combining theory and reality. Moreover, in the process of developing the capacity to lead the legal field as the next generation, they faced challenges and confirmed their potential to have a positive impact on society. Considering that CWNU's Department of Law consistently produces many successful candidates in various fields, including academia, legal circles, government institutions, and corporations every year, we hope that this criminal mock trial will serve as a foothold for law students to take a leading role in advancing legal culture in South Korea.
By Park Jeong-hyeon, reporter firstname.lastname@example.org
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