A South Korean courtroom has despatched one other of the nation’s strongest bosses to jail.
Shin Dong-bin, the billionaire chairman of conglomerate Lotte Group, was sentenced to 2 and a half years in jail after he was discovered responsible of bribery Tuesday.
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The trial of Shin, 62, adopted a huge influence-peddling scandal that gripped the country and introduced down the federal government of former President Park Geun-hye.
Shin was discovered responsible of bribing a detailed confidante of Park. Prosecutors stated Lotte donated 7 billion gained ($6.four million) to a basis linked to Park’s good friend and acquired a authorities license for its responsibility free enterprise in return.
Shin has denied any wrongdoing. In an interview with CNN last year, he stated he wasn’t fearful about ending up behind bars as a result of he is harmless.
Now he is develop into the most recent instance of the comfy ties between South Korea’s enterprise and political elites. The scandal involving the previous president and the nation’s largest corporations introduced a whole lot of hundreds of protesters into the streets in late 2016.
In the reckoning that adopted, Lee Jae-yong, the de facto head of the Samsung ( enterprise empire, was discovered responsible of bribery and different fees in August. )
Lee walked free final week after his five-year jail sentence was suspended and decreased by an appeals courtroom.
Lotte stated Tuesday that Shin can even enchantment.
“We are in misery with this unexpected result,” the corporate stated in an announcement. “We have pleaded not guilty and defended [Shin] throughout the trial with evidence, but this evidence was not acknowledged and we are dismayed.”
The firm stated it’ll go into “emergency operating mode” to ease worries amongst workers, clients and traders.
Shares in Lotte’s retail division closed down four% in Seoul.
Shin was convicted on the identical day as Choi Soon-sil, the previous confidante of President Park. Choi received a 20-year prison sentence for fees together with abuse of energy, coercion, fraud and bribery.
Park, the nation’s first feminine president, is on trial on fees of corruption, coercion and leaking confidential info. She has pleaded not responsible.
Tuesday’s convictions come as South Korea hosts the Winter Olympics.
Lotte, like Samsung, is an official associate of the occasion. It stated it’ll proceed to assist the video games.
It is the most recent setback for the family-run conglomerate, whose wide selection of companies embody sweet, retail, motels and building.
Lotte’s enterprise in China got here underneath fireplace final 12 months over a controversial U.S. missile protection system. Dozens of Lotte shops in China closed and work on a theme park in the nation was suspended after it agreed at hand over land to the South Korean authorities to accommodate the system.
— Jung-eun Kim and Jethro Mullen contributed to this report.
CNNMoney (Hong Kong) First revealed February 13, 2018: 5:30 AM ET