On A Wing And a Payoff

Northrop faces an F-20 probe

In 1984 Northrop, the Los Angeles-based defense contractor, turned over $6.25 million to a company that was not a usual supplier. The money, which was ostensibly intended to finance the construction of a hotel in Seoul, went into the Hong Kong bank account of a firm controlled by Park Chong Kyu, a former South Korean general and owner of a Seoul night spot called the Safari Club.

But the hotel was never built, and Congress and the Korean government are investigating another possibility: that the funds amounted to a payoff to Park, who had important political connections in Seoul. Northrop allegedly...

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