Samsung heir Jay Y. Lee returns to jail for bribery

He has been sentenced to 2.5 years after his first prison term was shortened. Samsung’s heir Jay Y. Lee has been sentenced to two and a half years in prison on bribery charges.

Kim Hong-Ji / Reuters

The South Korean Supreme Court reversed that decision and ordered a court battle that began four years ago in 2017, but he was released after just one year when his original term was suspended on appeal.

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Lee was arrested as part of the corruption scandal involving South Korean President Park Geun-Hye, who was sentenced to 20 years in prison for influence peddling. Lee was found guilty of using her wealth to influence Park in Samsung’s business interests, including the merger of two Samsung units.

Prosecutors had initially lobbied for Lee to give him a 12-year sentence to show that even Samsung was not above the law.

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While in jail, Lee may not be able to make important decisions for Samsung if the demand for memory chips and other products is sky-high. Korea and Samsung in particular have recently gained prominence due to the difficult US-China relationship. 

At the final hearing in the trial, Lee made a long apology and promised to build a “new Samsung” and “fix what the court has termed the damage to chaebol [family owned conglomerate],” he said.

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He also did not swear the verdict was based in part on the court’s assessment of an independent compliance committee set up by Samsung to oversee executive misconduct. Lee’s legal troubles are not over yet as he is also on trial for alleged fraud following the death of his father Lee Kun-hee late last year.

is still expected to become chairman of Samsung once he is free.

Engadget / TechConflict.Com

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