White paper on crime 2011 Part2/Chapter1/1
All cases cleared by the police, etc. are referred to public prosecutors, with certain exceptions for cases subject to disposition as trivial offenses (refers to the disposition of certain cases with highly mitigating factors of minor theft, minor fraud, and minor embezzlement, etc. committed by adults, which come under criteria predetermined by public prosecutors as those not needing the judicial police officers to refer them to public prosecutors, as in accordance with the proviso of Article 246 of the Code of Criminal Procedure) and for Road Traffic Act violations for which non-penal fine had already been paid. The number of persons disposed by the police as trivial offenses in 2010 was 105,120 (the number of persons disposed by the police as trivial offenses for non-traffic penal code offenses was 105,115, accounting for 32.6% of the total number of persons cleared) (Source: Criminal Statistics by National Police Agency).
In addition to investigating cases referred to them by police officers (general judicial police officers) and special judicial police officers, including coast guard officers and narcotics agents, etc., public prosecutors can also initiate the investigation of cases that they have come to know or about which they have received a complaint/accusation and decide whether to prosecute them or not after investigation on whether a crime actually took place and the need for punishment, etc.