Samsung Chief Walks Free on Appeal

Lee Jae-yong vice chairman of Samsung Electronics speaks before leaving a detention center in Uiwang South Korea

005930) heir, Lee Jae-yong, has walked free from his suspended jail sentence following the scandal of bribery and corruption.

In late August 2017 Patently Apple posted a report titled "Samsung in Shock as Vice Chairman Lee Jae-young is sentenced to a Five Year Jail Term".

- 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.

The appellate court Monday overturned some of the charges, including part of the bribery charges and one charge of illegally transferring assets overseas. "It is questionable how the law can be so generous toward chaebol owners while so strict toward workers and ordinary people". Chung was detained for nearly two months following his arrest in April 2006, before he was released on bail and also pardoned by President Lee.

Park had denied allegations that she conspired with Choi to extort money and favors from South Korean companies. His absence hasn't impacted Samsung's business, which has posted a series of record financial returns over the past year.

But in October, a wave of top Samsung Electronics executives stepped down, moves that may have been meant to put pressure on the system to help the company avoid a leadership vacuum.

Samsung was founded by Lee's grandfather some 80 years ago as an exporter of fruit and dried fish but has since grown into a huge, diversified conglomerate that now comprises 60 different business units.

Lee's initial sentence was halved and the remaining time he has not yet served was suspended. That's what happened to his father, Samsung Group Chairman Lee Kun-hee, who was twice convicted of corruption - and twice pardoned.

The ruling also freed Lee from detention.

"Korean courts consider the defendant's contribution to the national economy as a mitigating factor", said author Breen.

Counsel to Lee expressed his "respect for the court's courage and wisdom to give a not guilty verdict of key charges".

Former United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has declared that he won't run for South Korea's presidency.

Moreover, the outlook may have become even more negative for the former president with the court blaming Park and Choi for "coercing Samsung executives". "If we were to succeed in reforming the running of the chaebols and also increasing transparency, I believe this will not only help the economic power of Korea but also help to make the chaebols themselves more competitive".

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