Samsung chief questioned as suspect in SKorean scandal

 12 Jan 2017 - 12:11

Samsung chief questioned as suspect in SKorean scandal
Photo: AA


SEOUL: Samsung Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong faced up to the possibility of arrest Thursday, as he showed up for questioning by investigators in Seoul as requested a day earlier.

Considered the corporate giant’s successor to his ailing father, Lee has become increasingly caught in a bribery scandal that contributed to the impeachment of President Park Geun-hye last month.

He echoed an earlier apology by saying sorry for “failing to show a positive image” when addressing reporters on arrival, according to local news agency Yonhap.

This is the third time Lee has been interrogated as part of the scandal but he is now being treated as a suspect -- the special probe team has not ruled out seeking an arrest warrant after securing further evidence connecting Samsung to Park’s arrested private confidante Choi Soon-sil, whose niece submitted a tablet PC to investigators this week.

The device’s contents have fueled claims of a 22 billion won ($18.6 million) contract between Samsung and a German company under the partial ownership of Choi.

Lee has denied buying favors despite questions surrounding the state-run pension fund’s support for a Samsung merger in 2015, which was ironically seen as an effort to smooth the transition of power from father to son.

Suspicions arose months ago as it emerged South Korea’s biggest conglomerate donated 20.4 billion won ($17.3 million) to nonprofit foundations linked to Choi.

Samsung was at the top of a list of big corporate names that backed the foundations in the name of boosting local sports and culture under alleged pressure from the president.

Other peculiarities involving Samsung include significant financial help for Choi’s equestrian star daughter Chung Yoo-ra, who is currently being held in Denmark while officials there consider an extradition request from Seoul.

Related News

arrow Read More
Qatar-Korea LED project to start production soon: Envoy

 12 Jan 2017 - 8:00

Ambassador of South Korea to Qatar, Heung-kyeong Park, said yesterday that Qatar-Korea LED project with an initial capacity of producing 0.5 million MENA-tailored LED lights per year will soon become operational.

arrow Read More
SKorean court wants more from impeached President Park

 10 Jan 2017 - 14:49

South Korea’s Constitutional Court is getting tougher on impeached President Park Geun-hye, as it loses time within its six-month window to decide whether to confirm or overturn last month’s parliamentary vote to oust the scandal-hit leader.

arrow Read More
Samsung's profit jumps 50% despite Galaxy fiasco

 06 Jan 2017 - 21:49

Samsung Electronics Co said yesterday that its profits in the last quarter of 2016 surged 50 percent to the highest level in more than three years, despite the Galaxy Note 7 fiasco.