Samsung vice chairman and the company’s heir apparent Jay Y. Lee, son of Samsung’s Chairman was arrested in South Korea in February 2017 on charges of bribery, embezzlement, capital flight and perjury charges. The high court has sentenced him to 5 years in prison. However the court reduced his sentence to 2,5 years following an appeal. Lee was then allowed to leave prison on a four-year probation.
His arrest happened last year following accusations of paying bribes to an advisor of former President Park Geun-hye in exchange for political favors aimed at cementing his position within Samsung Electronics. Reportedly Lee gave a total of $36 million to the secret of President Park, the country’s first female leader’s advisor in order to win government support for a merger between two Samsung subsidiaries. Park was impeached and removed from office due to the influence of her aides.
Although Lee has served one year in custody, his arrest has not had any negative impact on Samsung’s business. On the contrary the company has made record breaking revenues including an all-time-high $69 billion in revenue for its chipset division in 2017.
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