He was accused of corruption, embezzlement and perjury and involved in the scandal that has engulfed the President Park. According to the judges the reasons are not sufficient to approve the request for provisional arrest.
Seoul (AsiaNews / Agencies) - A court has rejected the request for the arrest of the deputy head of Samsung Group Lee Jae-yong. According to the judges the allegations of bribery, embezzlement and perjury are not supported by sufficient evidence.
According to the prosecution, Lee is involved in the scandal that has engulfed President Park Geun-hye for donating to Choi Soon-sil – an influential friend of hers - about 36.3 million US dollars in exchange for favors to support the corporate merger of two subsidiary groups of Samsung. The company acknowledges having made donations to two foundations related to Choi, but rejects the accusation of having done so in exchange for favors.
Samsung Electronics is a high profile company in South Korea and its sales correspond to one fifth of the country's GDP. After the death of his father Kun-hae in 2014, Lee Jae-yong took over the company becoming the de facto leader of the entire Samsung Group.
He is accused of paying bribes to Choi Soon-sil worth more than US$ 36 million US. Prosecutors allege that the group also financed a Choi-owned sports company to the tune of US$ 18.3 million.
In January, he had escaped arrest for lack of evidence. Samsung has donated the most money ($ 70 million) to the Choi Soon-sil foundations, the friend who has dragged Park to impeachment. Candidates in new presidential elections react.
During the fourth weekend of protests, the South Korean people continue to crowd the streets of the capital. The presidential office rejects the prosecutors accusations, who say Park is an "accomplice" and "suspect".
"She has betrayed the trust of the people and the Constitution." Two pro-Park supporters, were killed during a demonstration in front of the Court. Elections in May.
Choi Soon-sil, 60, has been a friend and confidant of the Park since her mother’s murder in 1974. Choi ‘s father was an ambiguous character, first a Buddhist monk, then Christian pastor, then a leader of a church he founded. Demonstrations in Seoul and Busan blaming Park of being a Choi “puppet”.