Samsung Vice chairman, Lee Jae-yong, has been sentenced to five years in prison after finding him guilty of bribes and other crimes
A South Korean court sentenced Lee Jae-yong over role in scandal that led to impeachment of former president Park Guen-hye
Lee Jae had been accused of making large donations to foundations run by a close friend and confidante of the deposed South Korean president, Park Geun-hye, in return for political favours.
The court report according to South Korea’s Yonhap News agency that Lee had provided bribes anticipating support from Park, who was still president at the time.
Despite claims by his legal team that Lee had little involvement in the day-to-day running of Samsung, the court held on the fact that he had approved donations to Park’s friend, Choi Soon-sil, in return for securing government support for the contentious merger of two Samsung affiliates that would strengthen his control over the group.
Since his arrest in February, Lee has insisted the payments were made to Samsung without his knowledge, and with no expectation of favours from the Park administration.
Choi is alleged to have set up the foundations to support Park’s policy initiatives. Samsung has not denied donating money to the foundations, but said it was forced to do so by Park.