South Korea: Ex-president Park Geun-hye’s long jail term upheld

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South Korea’s Supreme Court on Thursday upheld a 20-year jail term for former President Park Geun-hye over bribery and different crimes.

It is the ultimate ruling within the historic corruption case that noticed the nation’s first feminine chief impeached in 2017 and concludes a prolonged authorized course of.

In whole, she might serve as much as 22 years, following a separate conviction for illegally meddling in her celebration’s candidate nominations forward of parliamentary elections in 2016.

The court docket on Thursday additionally upheld fines and forfeits totaling 21.5 billion gained (€16 million, $19.5 million).

Park was not current in court docket on Thursday. She has boycotted court docket proceedings since October 2017, claiming they’re biased in opposition to her.

What did Park Geun-hye do?

She was convicted of colluding together with her longtime confidante, Choi Soon-sil, to take thousands and thousands of {dollars} in bribes and extortion from among the nation’s largest enterprise teams, together with Samsung, whereas she was in workplace from 2013 to 2016.

She was additionally indicted on fees of illegally taking month-to-month funds from her intelligence chiefs that have been diverted from the company’s finances.

A timeline of court docket dates

Park was impeached by lawmakers in December 2016, following weeks-long well-liked protests.

She was formally faraway from workplace in March 2017 after the Constitutional Court upheld the impeachment.

The Seoul High Court in 2018 had sentenced her to 25 years in jail after reviewing her of bribery, extortion, abuse of energy and different convictions collectively.

But the Supreme Court in October 2019 ordered the Seoul High Court to cope with Park’s bribery cost individually from different fees. This was based mostly on a regulation for instances involving a president or different elected officers, even when the alleged crimes are dedicated collectively.

The High Court had handed Park a five-year term over the spy fund fees in July 2019, however the Supreme Court additionally ordered a retrial on the case in November.

Prosecutors appealed after the Seoul High Court handed Park a 20-year term in July final 12 months over the costs.

Could Park be pardoned?

Finalizing of her jail term makes Park eligible for a particular presidential pardon.

Lee Nak-yon, the chief of President Moon Jae-in’s Democratic Party, stated earlier this month he “plans to suggest” pardoning Park and Lee Myung-bak, one other former president at present serving a jail term. This suggestion confronted an instantaneous backlash from politicians throughout the spectrum.

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