South Korean prosecutors on Wednesday requested a nine-year prison term for Samsung’s de facto chief, Lee Jae-yong, throughout a retrial of his bribery fees.
The case is a key aspect in an explosive 2016 scandal that triggered months of public protests and toppled the nation’s president.
The improvement comes as Lee faces immense strain to navigate Samsung’s transition after his father and Samsung Electronics Chairman Lee Kun-Hee died in October at age 78 after years of hospitalisation.
Special prosecutor Park Young-soo demanded the Seoul High Court sentence Lee to prison. He stated Samsung “more actively sought illicit benefits” than different companies with regard to the 2016 scandal.
Park stated Samsung, which is South Korea’s greatest firm, ought to “set the example” for efforts to root out corruption.
Lee, 52, vice chairman of Samsung Electronics, was sentenced in 2017 to 5 years in prison for providing 8.6 billion received (USD 7 million) in bribes to former President Park Geun-hye and one in all her longtime confidants to get her authorities’s backing for his push to solidify his management over Samsung.
But he was freed in early 2018 after the Seoul High Court diminished his term to 2 ½ years and suspended his sentence, overturning key convictions and lowering the quantity of his bribes.
Last 12 months, the Supreme Court returned the case to the excessive courtroom, ruling that the quantity of Lee’s bribes had been undervalued.
In September, prosecutors individually indicted Lee for alleged inventory value manipulation, breach of belief and auditing violations associated to a 2015 merger between two Samsung associates that helped strengthen Lee’s management over the group’s crown jewel, Samsung Electronics.
Lee’s legal professionals denied the fees, calling them “one-sided claims.” They say the 2015 merger was “normal business activity.”