South Korea prosecutors seek to put Samsung boss in jail for the second time

South Korea prosecutors seek to put Samsung boss in jail for the second time
Samsung Electronics boss Jay Y. Lee, who was in jail some years ago over bribing a former president, is now facing another conviction.

South Korean prosecutors seek a five-year jail term for Jay Y. Lee over charges of accounting fraud and stock price manipulation involving an $8 billion merger of Samsung affiliates in 2015 (via Reuters).

Lee has denied the charges.

This current hearing is the final lower court session; next is a ruling, which is expected within months. The trial so far has lasted three years.

The report goes into detail, stating that this case is the last against Lee, who was pardoned for an earlier, separate conviction and cemented last year his leadership position at Samsung as executive chairman.

At the hearing, prosecutors told the Seoul Central District Court that Lee and other former executives had violated the Capital Markets Act to make possible the 2015 merger that helped Lee assume greater control of the group's flagship Samsung Electronics.

Prosecutors allege the executives' wrongdoings included stock price manipulation that helped them gain at the expense of minority investors. "The defendants undermined the foundation of the capital market to ease the leader's succession," the prosecution said.

Lee and the executives have denied this, saying the merger and accounting processes that prosecutors have taken issue with were part of normal management activities.

Jay Y. Lee was earlier convicted of bribing former South Korean President Park Geun-hye and went to jail for a total of 18 months in the period from 2017 to 2021. He was paroled in 2021 and pardoned in 2022.

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