South Korea prosecutors seek arrest warrant for Samsung Group chief

World - Mohit Shah - Jan 16,2017

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south korea prosecutors seek arrest warrant for samsung group chief


On Monday, South Korea’s special prosecutor’s office announced it will seek an arrest warrant against Samsung Group chief, Jay Y. Lee, for his involvement in the corruption scandal.

The corruption scandal of South Korea involving President Park Geun-hye escalated on Monday. Samsung Group chief Jay Y. Lee was interrogated for 22 straight hours last week.

The special prosecutor’s office has requested for an arrest warrant against Jay Y. Lee which needs to be approved by the court. An official at Seoul central district court informed that the date of hearing still needs to be confirmed.

South Korea prosecutors have been noticing whether Samsung's backing for a business and foundations supported by Park's friend, Choi Soon-sil, may have been linked to the National Pension Service's 2015 agreement to support a controversial $8 billion collaboration with two Samsung Group affiliates.

Samsung has already acknowledged the offering of funds to the three institutions but has constantly denied accusations of promoting to guide the merger.

In connection with this high-profile scandal, NPS chairman Moon Hyung-pyo was charged with abuse of power and offering false testimony on Monday.  Also, Choi was presented before the Constitutional Court, refusing wrongdoing.

President Park still remains in office but has been deprived of her powers.

Choi, being the core accused, is blamed for plotting with Park to pressure big businesses, such as Samsung, to favor non-profit foundations supporting the president's initiatives.

The East Asia Nation has been gripped by political dilemma for months, with the impeachment of Park in December. Park has denied wrongdoing, however, admitted negligence in her relationship with Choi.

If the impeachment is sustained by the Constitutional Court, there are strong chances that an election would be held in the next two months, with former U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon seen as an expected candidate.