Ex-South Korean president indicted for corruption

Ex-South Korean president indicted for corruption

Seoul : South Korean prosecutors on Monday indicted former President Lee Myung-bak with 16 counts on a number of corruption charges, which also includes taking bribes.

Lee has been in pre-trial detention since he was arrested last month on charges of bribery, embezzlement, abuse of power and other irregularities.

The former South Korean president is accused of taking bribes amounting to 11.1 billion won, which also includes 700 million won from the state intelligence service and 5.85 USD million in lawsuit expenses, wherein multi-national conglomerate Samsung paid on Lee’s behalf of his possible owning of a car parts firm, DAS, Yonhap news agency reported.

Lee is accused of embezzling about 35 billion won from Samsung and using the money for political and personal gains.

The 76-year-old tainted leader was also accused of receiving 2.25 billion won from Lee Pal-seung, a former chief of Woori Finance Holdings Co., 500 million won from Daebo Group, a Seoul-based operator of expressway rest stops and 400 million won from former lawmaker Kim So-nam.

Other charges against Lee include tax evasion, breach of trust, illegally shipping presidential documents out of the country and stashing them at a private building and a violation of the country’s election law.

Lee is the fourth President of South Korea to be arrested, indicted and put on trial after former Presidents Chun Doo-hwan, Roh Tae-woo and most recently, Park Geun-hye respectively.

The prosecutors are currently looking into the charges and are mulling to impose further charges against Lee. They are also planning to freeze Lee’s assets in order to prevent him from disposing of it.

The former South Korean president has consistently denied such charges against him and said that he did not commit any wrongdoing. However, Lee has refused to meet with the prosecutors for additional questioning.

The indictment comes after former South Korean President Park, who was impeached last year amid a sensational corruption scandal, was given 24 years of imprisonment by the prosecutors on Friday.

The 66-year-old was found guilty of crimes ranging from bribery to coercion, abuse of power and the leaking of state secrets. She has also been fined 18 billion won.

Park is also the first female leader and also the first ever South Korean president to be impeached on corruption charges. (ANI)