Samsung heir released from prison following bribery scandal

Samsung Heir Faces Verdict over Bribery in Appeals Trial

Samsung Heir Faces Verdict over Bribery in Appeals Trial

Samsung Electronics vice chairman Lee Jae-yong has been freed after his sentence was suspended by the appellate court on Monday.

- Lee Jay-hyun, CJ Group chairman, was sentenced to four years in 2014 for embezzlement, breach of fiduciary duty and tax evasion before that was eventually reduced to two-and-a-half years.

Lee is now on probation for four years.

"This may be a courageous decision by the court to look at solid evidence rather than public opinion". He stood up and looked around with a blank stare after the ruling, and was blushing as he walked out of the courtroom. Both sentences were suspended.

Samsung shares climbed Monday following the suspension of Lee's prison sentence. The sprawling conglomerate has dozens of businesses in insurance, construction, advertising and shipbuilding.

Lee had been in custody since February 2017. Judge Cheong Hyung-sik said that Park "browbeat" the Samsung executives, including Lee, into giving the bribes.

"The news was encouraging for us as we are doing last-minute works to launch the S9 series", said an employee working for the IT & Mobile Communications division at Samsung.

The outrage spread into the streets of Seoul.

Lee's father Lee Kun-Hee went on to build up the tech empire but was convicted of bribery in 1996.

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Kwon Oh-hyun, vice chairman and CEO of Samsung Electronics, announced that he was stepping down, saying their needs to be new, younger leadership due to unprecedented crisis caused by Lee's absence.

The case against Lee, vice-chairman of Samsung Electronics, is seen as a test of the judiciary's tolerance of the country's family-owned conglomerates, known as "chaebols" and their close ties to politics.

Moreover, the outlook may have become even more negative for the former president with the court blaming Park and Choi for "coercing Samsung executives".

The appeals court said Lee was unable to reject the then-president's request to financially support her confidante and was coerced into making the payments. "The essence of this case is that the defendant passively answered to political power". He also stressed responsibility should heavier for public officials in bribery cases.

On January 14, 2008, Korean police raided Lee's home and office in an ongoing probe into accusations that Samsung was responsible for a slush fund used to bribe influential prosecutors, judges, and political figures in South Korea. Prosecutors also were expected to appeal the court's ruling, making it nearly certain the case will go to the Supreme Court. The decision set Lee free following a yearlong detention amidst a corruption scandal, which brought the former president down. Samsung C&T's stock rose 2.1 percent.

Samsung reported record profit last week disclosing numbers that it's chip business pulls in more revenue than the intel corp. His lawyers said they would appeal the ruling.

"I want to say once again how sorry I am that I have failed to present a good image of myself", Lee said as he left prison, according to agencies.

Former President Park, who continues to deny any wrongdoing, is on trial for bribery, coercion and abuse of power.

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