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Samsung's Jay Y Lee faces a retrial that could put him back in jail

Lee is the designated heir to South Korea's largest conglomerate and a national icon


Jay Y Lee
Jay Y Lee

South Korea’s highest court ordered the retrial of Electronics Vice-Chairman over bribery charges, reviving legal uncertainty around the company just as it is navigating global trade turmoil.

The Supreme Court voided an earlier decision to suspend Lee’s 2.5-year prison sentence and is sending the case back to the lower court.

Lee may end up going to prison again, having previously served a year after getting arrested in February 2017.

He was released in 2018 after the Seoul High Court halved what had originally been a 5-year term and suspended it for four years.

The executive was accused of directing tens of millions of dollars to entities controlled by a confidante of Park in return for government support of a 2015 merger that cemented his control of the group.

The court on Thursday also ordered a retrial for Park, who is already in jail, arguing she should face trial on broader bribery charges.

Lee is the designated heir to South Korea’s largest conglomerate and a national icon.

First Published: Fri, August 30 2019. 02:38 IST