Lee-Jae-Yong, the vice-chairman of Samsung, has been found guilty of bribery and embezzlement. Due to the charges against him, he has been sentenced to five years of imprisonment. His crimes were disclosed at the Seoul Central District Court on Friday where he was found guilty of offences related to a corruption scandal that brought down exiled and former South Korean President Park Geun-Hye.
Experts believe that Lee-Jae-Yong’s absence in the industry can lead to a great deal of mismanagement and obstruct further key investments for Samsung. He is the son of the current Samsung group chairman, Lee Kun-Hee. The company was founded by his grandfather in 1938. It is referred to as the “Republic of Samsung” by many South Koreans and is one of the largest family-controlled firms dominating Asia’s fourth-largest economy.
The vice-chairman of the company walked out of the justice ministry bus handcuffed with a white rope bound around his jacket. He carried an envelope of documents as he entered the Seoul Central District Court.
According to the sources, he has been convicted on charges that he bribed ex-President Park to help secure control of a conglomerate that owns Samsung Electronics, the world’s most popular smartphone and chip maker, and has interests ranging from drugs and home appliances to insurance and hotels.
“This case is a matter of Lee Jae-yong and Samsung Group executives, who had been steadily preparing for Lee’s succession … bribing the president”, Seoul Central District Court Judge Kim Jin-dong said.
He added that Lee has been benefiting the most from the political favours for the company. One of his lawyers, Song Wu-cheol, said that he would appeal.
“The entire guilty verdict is unacceptable”, Song said. He claimed that he was confident if the matter will be taken to higher court, his client’s innocence would be confirmed. This case is most likely to be appealed and taken to the Supreme Court next year.