Samsung chairman Jay Y Lee jailed for five years in corruption scandal

Samsung chairman Jay Y Lee jailed for five years in corruption scandal

Samsung chairman Jay Y Lee jailed for five years in corruption scandal

The Samsung heir Lee Jae-yong was convicted of bribery today in a South Korean court pushing the company to rethink its prospects, said The Journal today.

He stood accused of offering millions of dollars to former president Park Geun-hye, who is now undergoing her own trial, and business partner Choi Soon-sil, in exchange for favourable businesss conditions.

"This case is a matter of Lee Jae-young and Samsung Group executives, who had been steadily preparing for Lee's succession.bribing the president", said Seoul Central District Court judge Kim Jin-dong. The court added that bribes were given in anticipation of helping secure approval for a merger between two Samsung subsidiary companies that gave Lee more power at the expense of other shareholders. "The entire guilty verdict is unacceptable", he said.

After all, Lee Kun-hee, the now out for the count chairman of Samsung was previously convicted of bribery and tax evasion, only to later be pardoned.

The trial of the century started all the way back in winter when the Samsung Electronics heir was charged with bribery, among other things, in a scandal that swept the nation. Lee, the South Korea's third richest man, has apparently been convicted in a case of bribery and cronyism that has previously toppled the country's president, Park Geun-hye. Lee's lawyers had argued that the merger was based on business merits, but this was not accepted by the court.

Four other former top Samsung executives were also found guilty, with two given terms of up to four years and the other pair receiving suspended sentences.

Samsung has not denied transferring corporate funds, but Lee, vice chairman at Samsung Electronics and the Samsung founder's grandson, claimed innocence during the court hearing. "Chaebol leaders used to get the same sentencing every time, there was even a saying called the "3-5 law" - three years sentencing, five years probation", said professor Park shortly before the verdict. Park Geun-hye is the daughter of the former South Korean dictator and was the first female president of the country.

450 applications were received for the 30 seats in the public gallery of the court to witness the "trial of the century", something which the South Korean media billed.

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