Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong is facing nine years’ imprisonment for a bribery case that contributed to the downfall of former President Park Nguyen-hae. The prosecution argued that the length of the sentence was justified because of Samsung’s power as the largest conglomerate in South Korea, or as a family-owned conglomerate.
“Samsung is a group with overwhelming power that Korean companies are said to be divided into Samsung and non-Samsung,” they said at the final hearing on Wednesday, the Korea Herald reports. The final decision is scheduled for January 18th.
The bribery case is separate from another trial involving Lee, over alleged accounting fraud and stock price manipulation. The hearing in that case began in October.
The bribe case dates back to 2017, when Lee Seung-yuop was convicted of bribing Park and his close associate Choi Soon-sil and sentenced to five years in prison. The prosecution claims that the bribe was to secure the government’s support for Lee Kun-hee, who tried to take control of Samsung from Chairman Lee Kun-hee. Illegal payments were a major part of the corruption scandal that led to Park’s impeachment, arrest and 25 years in prison.
Lee Seung-yuop was released in 2018 after his sentence was commuted and suspended on appeal, and returned to work as Samsung’s de facto head after his father had a heart attack in 2014.
However, in August 2019, the Supreme Court overturned the Court of Appeals, ruled that it was too generous, and ordered a retrial at the Seoul High Court.
Elder Lee, the wealthiest citizen of South Korea, reportedly died in October. He is worth an estimated $ 20.7 billion, and under the national tax system, Fortune reports that his heirs could be liable for an inheritance tax of about $ 10 billion.
TechCrunch is asking Samsung for comment.
Samsung vice chairman Jay Y. Lee faces nine-year sentence in bribery case – TechCrunch Source link Samsung vice chairman Jay Y. Lee faces nine-year sentence in bribery case – TechCrunch