Samsung Heir Could Face 12-Year Sentence

  • Samsung Heir Could Face 12-Year Sentence

Samsung Heir Could Face 12-Year Sentence

Holding back tears, Lee denied the charges in his final statement to the court.

Along with four other executives, he is accused of offering $38 million (32.2 million euros) in bribes to a close friend of then-President Park Guen-hye.

At the final hearing held at the Seoul Central District Court, Special Counsel Park Youg-soo said that the Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman was a direct beneficiary and final decision maker in the bribery scheme.

"I deeply regret that I have given such disappointment and apologise", he said.

Lee, 49, has been in detention since February, and on trial for charges including bribery and embezzlement as part of a scandal that led to Park's ouster.

Such dealings once helped fuel the country's rapid industrialization but now increasingly are viewed as illegal and unfair.

"The (Samsung) case typical corruption crime deriving from collusion between the public and corporate sector that had greatly undermined the constitutional values of civilian sovereignty and economic democratization", said the team of special prosecutors.

The WSJ said that prosecutors had called for 10-year sentences for three other former Samsung officials involved in the same case, and a seven-year term for a fourth former Samsung official.

He will face the longest prison term on record for a South Korean conglomerate executive if the court finds him guilty when it makes a ruling August 25, two days before Lee's current period of detention ends.

Police investigators reportedly searched for documents relating to the allegations that Samsung Group paid a house interior firm from accounts created under borrowed names without issuing tax receipts from October 2008 to March 2015.

Despite these developments, Samsung Electronics shares have risen strongly in recent months on soaring profits, driven by strong demand for its memory chips.

Park Geun-hye outside court in Seoul on Monday.

It is alleged he made a large donation in exchange for government support of a merger of two Samsung subsidiaries.