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Samsung chief’s ‘trial of the century’ to start next week

The Samsung scion's hearing will be held in a court that can accommodate more than 150 people.

By: Reuters | Seoul |
Updated: August 22, 2018 11:41:42 pm
This VLT image of the Thor’s Helmet Nebula was taken on the occasion of ESO’s 50th Anniversary, 5 October 2012, with the help of Brigitte Bailleul — winner of the Tweet Your Way to the VLT! competition. The observations were broadcast live over the internet from the Paranal Observatory in Chile. This object, also known as NGC 2359, lies in the constellation of Canis Major (The Great Dog). The helmet-shaped nebula is around 15 000 light-years away from Earth and is over 30 light-years across. The helmet is a cosmic bubble, blown as the wind from the bright, massive star near the bubble's centre sweeps through the surrounding molecular cloud.
Samsung, Samsung J Y Lee, J Y Lee trial, Samsung chief jail, Samsung chief arrested, Jay Y Lee corruption scandal, Park Geun-hye impeachment, South Korea corruption scandal, Samsung corruption Samsung Group chief, Jay Y. Lee arrives at the office of the independent counsel team in Seoul, South Korea, February 18, 2017. REUTERS/Kim Hong-Ji

Samsung Group leader Jay Y Lee will go on trial for bribery and embezzlement on Thursday, a court said, amid a corruption scandal that has rocked South Korea and led to the impeachment of the president. Lee, the 48-year-old third-generation leader of the country’s top conglomerate, was indicted on Tuesday on charges including pledging 43 billion won ($37.24 million) in payments to a confidant of President Park Geun-hye.

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“We are preparing hard, thinking that the upcoming Samsung trial… could be the trial of the century that the entire world will be watching,” special prosecutor Park Young-soo told reporters.

The Samsung scion’s hearing will be held in a court that can accommodate more than 150 people, according to the Seoul Central District Court’s court database. Lee, who was arrested on February 17, was charged with bribery and embezzlement in a case that has dealt a blow to the standard bearer for Asia’s fourth-largest economy. Among the charges against Lee are pledging bribes to a company and organisations tied to Park’s confidant, Choi Soon-sil, the woman at the centre of the scandal, to cement his control of the smartphones-to-biopharmaceuticals business empire.

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Samsung Group declined to comment but has denied wrongdoing.

The funding also included Samsung’s sponsorship of the equestrian career of Choi’s daughter, prosecutors say.

Legislation appointing the special prosecutor states that the trial should be finished in three months.

President Park, 65, daughter of a former military strongman, has had her powers suspended since her impeachment by Parliament in December.

Should the Constitutional Court uphold the impeachment, she would become the country’s first democratically elected president to be thrown out of office. A decision is expected this month.

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First published on: 03-03-2017 at 01:37:52 pm
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