South Korean prosecutors seek 12-year jail term for Samsung heir Lee

Lee was found guilty of providing $8.19 million in bribes to Choi Soon-sil, a long-time friend and confidante of former President Park Geun-hye. Photograph:( Zee News Network )

Reuters South Korea Dec 27, 2017, 08.10 AM (IST)

South Korean prosecutors on Wednesday sought a 12-year jail term for Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Jay Y. Lee on appeal after a lower court sentenced him to five years in August for bribery in a case that rocked the country.

The Seoul High Court is expected to rule on the case in late January. Lee, the 49-year-old heir to one of the world`s biggest corporate empires, has been detained since February on charges of corruption. 

The 49-year-old Lee, who heads the largest conglomerate in the country, received a five-year jail term on August 25 on the conviction of five charges, including bribery, embezzlement and hiding assets overseas, Yonhap news agency reported.

He was found guilty of providing $8.19 million in bribes to Choi Soon-sil, a long-time friend and confidante of former President Park Geun-hye.

Four former top Samsung executives -- Choi Gee-sung, former head of Samsung`s now-disbanded control tower Future Strategy Office; his former deputy Chang Choong-ki; Park Sang-jin, a former president of Samsung Electronics; and another former President Hwang Sung-soo -- were also convicted of similar charges and sentenced to four years in prison or suspended terms. They have all appealed the rulings.