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SEOUL — A U.S. Army major based at Yongsan Garrison was arrested early Tuesday morning after allegedly throwing a nude female body from a highway bridge outside the city.

South Korean police said Tuesday they arrested the officer, whom they identified as Maj. Richard Hart, 45, on an expressway between Seoul and Incheon International Airport around 4 a.m.

The officer was questioned and turned over to U.S. military officials Tuesday afternoon, said Detective Oh Hui-sok of the Criminal Case Division at Incheon Soboo Police Station.

U.S. Forces Korea issued a brief statement Tuesday confirming a U.S. Army officer had been arrested and that “the U.S. military is cooperating fully with the Korean National Police in this matter.” It also said the U.S. Army Criminal Investigative Command is involved.

Two South Korean news reports said the body was the officer’s wife. South Korean police officials would confirm only that it was a Caucasian woman who appeared to be in her 30s.

A USFK spokeswoman declined to confirm the officer’s identity or comment on the possible identity of the body.

South Korean police said an Incheon Airport Highway Patrol unit followed the officer as he drove away after throwing a large plastic bag from the Yongjong Bridge around 3:40 a.m.

The patrol unit approached the car after it apparently broke down about 320 yards down the road, police said. By then, another police unit had arrived, questioned the man and returned him to the bridge.

There, police discovered the body, nude and wrapped in plastic, Oh said.

The body, which had no obvious wounds, was taken to a hospital, police said.

Oh said he was to accompany Army investigators to view the body later Tuesday.

The U.S. officer kept silent during questioning and did not give police the body’s identity or how it came to be in his possession, Oh said.

Under the U.S.-Korea Status of Forces Agreement, South Korean officials can retain custody of U.S. military personnel accused of certain crimes.

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