Bus passengers get prison terms for assaulting drivers over face mask use

By Yonhap
  • Published : Feb 25, 2021 - 09:07
  • Updated : Feb 25, 2021 - 09:07

A man has been sentenced to six months in prison for reacting violently to a bus driver demanding the wearing of face masks on board to prevent coronavirus infections, judicial sources said Thursday.

The Seoul Central District Court handed out the prison term to the man, aged 57, saying he committed the crime of obstructing the bus driver on duty during a probationary period related to a separate crime, the sources said.

The man was recently indicted for cursing at the 39-year-old driver, who asked him to wear a mask aboard his bus last August, and creating disturbances on the bus for about 15 minutes.

The defendant was also accused of refusing to disembark after the driver repeatedly stressed the importance of mask wearing on public transport to prevent the spread of COVID-19, according to the officials.

The man became the second Seoul citizen in one week to be convicted of coronavirus-related violence on public transport.

A week ago, another uncooperative bus passenger in his 60s was sentenced to one and a half years in prison for assaulting a bus driver and other passengers who demanded he properly wear a mask.

Last October, a 61-year-old Seoul man was given a 10-month jail term for using violence against a bus driver who protested his refusal to wear a mask on a bus in August. (Yonhap)