The Honorable Justice JO Hee-de was born on June 6, 1957 in Gyeongju, Gyeongsangbuk-do. Justice Jo earned his LL.B. from Seoul National University and passed the 23rd National Judicial Examination in 1981.
Justice Jo started his judgeship in 1986 at Seoul Criminal District Court. He has served as a judge at various courts including Daegu District Court, Seoul Central District Court, Busan High Court, and Seoul High Court and as a professor at Judicial Research and Training Institute. He was appointed as a Justice on March 4, 2014 while serving as a Chief Judge of Daegu District Court since 2012.
Justice Jo is famous for carrying out strict and impartial trials. By listening to litigants carefully, he has endeavored that litigants did not bear resentment. In addition, he is reputed to draw an excellent conclusion through elaboration and to write persuasive and intelligible opinions.
Justice Jo rendered many judgments which ensured human rights of the people and protected the rights of the socially disadvantaged including minorities. For example, in the appellate case of ¡®Suwon Station homeless girl¡¯s death', in which a homeless teenage girl was murdered in Suwon, he ruled the juvenile defendants not guilty, judging that their confession in the prosecution was not reasonable and reliable.
Being strict to himself, but gentle and easy to others, Justice Jo is said to get along well with court employees as well as fellow judges.
Justice Jo has authored several theses and judicial decision commentaries in commercial law area such as international transaction and marine transportation, and also presented a pioneering study concerning the legal status of the transsexuals.