Samsung boss arrested in South Korean corruption scandal

Conor Coyle Sharecast | 17 Feb, 2017 11:33 | | |

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The de-facto head of South Korean electronics firm Samsung has been arrested on charges of bribery related to the ongoing corruption scandal in the country.

Samsung vice president Lee Jae Yong is the latest to be hit by the investigation, which has centred around impeached president Park Geun Hye and influential accomplice Choi Soon Sil.

Seoul's central district court sent out an arrest warrant for the executive on Thursday, after weeks of legal wrangling between prosecution lawyers and Lee's defence team.

A second petition requesting the arrest warrant for Lee was submitted by those in charge of the investigation into the corruption scandal. He was questioned by prosecutors in January but was not formally arrested.

The court said in a statement on Friday that it "acknowledged that it is necessary to arrest [Lee] in light of a newly added criminal charge and new evidence."

Prosecutors now have 20 days in which to issue formal charges against Lee, or the case against him will have to be dropped.

Park was impeached after allegations that she made agreements with Choi and her colleague Woo Byung Wo in order to pressure businesses in the country to donate to dubious foundations.

"We will do our best to ensure that the truth is revealed in future court proceedings," Samsung said in a statement.

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