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01/02/2014

South Korean convicted for 2012 Hackettstown school shooting threats

NEWARK, N.J. – As the result of the combined efforts of multiple law enforcement agencies, including U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), a South Korean national was convicted by the Korean Military Court for violations of Korean criminal laws for threatening to kill students at Hackettstown High School with an AK-47.

HSI Seoul special agents and the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency arrested Dai Woong Lee, 20, June 3 on obstruction of business charges. On Dec. 28, Lee was convicted by the Korean Military Court for threats and obstruction of business.

On March 26, 2012, the Warren County 911 Center received two calls from an individual identifying himself as Kevin McGowan. The caller indicated he was in the vicinity of the Hackettstown High School with an AK-47 and threatened to kill students. The Hackettstown School District initiated a lock down of the high school and other nearby schools. Eventually, law enforcement determined there was no imminent threat to any students, the lock down was lifted and students were released for the day.

As the investigation proceeded, various law enforcement agencies provided investigative and technical assistance to the Hackettstown Police Department. Based upon their combined efforts, they determined the target of the investigation was outside the United States, specifically in South Korea. HSI Seoul worked with the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency to locate Lee.

Lee was fined 10 million Korean Won, equivalent to approximately $10,000.