South Korea: Choi Soon-sil handed three-year jail term

AL JAREEZA

Seoul court finds longtime friend of ousted President Park guilty of bribing daughter’s professors.

Choi is also being tried alongside Park for allegedly taking bribes from electronics giant Samsung [Lee Jin-man/AP]
Choi is also being tried alongside Park for allegedly taking bribes from electronics giant Samsung [Lee Jin-man/AP]

A South Korean court sentenced Choi Soon-sil, a longtime friend of ousted President Park Guen-hye, to three years in prison for bribery in the first of a string of criminal cases against her.

Seoul Central District Court on Friday found Choi guilty of obstruction of duty by using her presidential ties to get her daughter admitted to Seoul’s prestigious Ewha Womans University and receive good grades.

Choi Kyung Hee, the former president of Ewha Womans University, and Namkung Gon, the university’s former head of admissions, were also jailed for two years and one-and-a-half years respectively for providing 21-year-old Chung Yoo-ra with favourable treatment.

READ MORE: The day Park Geun-hye was ousted

Chung was extradited from Denmark last month and is currently being investigated by prosecutors who see her as a key figure in the suspected bribery connections between former President Park and corporate giant Samsung.

Choi, 61, is also being tried alongside Park over claims they forced top companies, including Samsung, to “donate” tens of millions to foundations Choi controlled.

Choi could face decades in jail if convicted on the charges of extortion and abuse of power.

Following months of massive protests by millions and impeachment by politicians in December, Park was formally removed from office and arrested over the corruption scandal in March.

She was indicted in April on bribery and other charges.

Park, who is currently on trial for bribery, coercion, abuse of power and leaking state secrets, is also accused of allowing Choi to meddle in official government business, despite not holding any office.

Samsung’s heir Lee Jae-Yong, who was arrested in February and is currently on trial, has denied asking for policy favours when he met Park, arguing that Samsung was a victim of blackmail by the ex-president and Choi.

The future of South Korea after Park Geun-hye – Inside Story

Source: News agencies

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This entry was posted in Anti-corruption - Chống tham nhũng, Governance - Công quyền, South Korea and tagged , , by Trần Đình Hoành. Bookmark the permalink.

About Trần Đình Hoành

I am an attorney in the Washington DC area, with a Doctor of Law in the US, attended the master program at the National School of Administration of Việt Nam, and graduated from Sài Gòn University Law School. I aso studied philosophy at the School of Letters in Sài Gòn. I have worked as an anti-trust attorney for Federal Trade Commission and a litigator for a fortune-100 telecom company in Washington DC. I have taught law courses for legal professionals in Việt Nam and still counsel VN government agencies on legal matters. I have founded and managed businesses for me and my family, both law and non-law. I have published many articles on national newspapers and radio stations in Việt Nam. In 1989 I was one of the founding members of US-VN Trade Council, working to re-establish US-VN relationship. Since the early 90's, I have established and managed VNFORUM and VNBIZ forum on VN-related matters; these forums are the subject of a PhD thesis by Dr. Caroline Valverde at UC-Berkeley and her book Transnationalizing Viet Nam. I translate poetry and my translation of "A Request at Đồng Lộc Cemetery" is now engraved on a stone memorial at Đồng Lộc National Shrine in VN. I study and teach the Bible and Buddhism. In 2009 I founded and still manage dotchuoinon.com on positive thinking and two other blogs on Buddhism. In 2015 a group of friends and I founded website CVD - Conversations on Vietnam Development (cvdvn.net). I study the art of leadership with many friends who are religious, business and government leaders from many countries. In October 2011 Phu Nu Publishing House in Hanoi published my book "Positive Thinking to Change Your Life", in Vietnamese (TƯ DUY TÍCH CỰC Thay Đổi Cuộc Sống). In December 2013 Phu Nu Publishing House published my book "10 Core Values for Success". I practice Jiu Jitsu and Tai Chi for health, and play guitar as a hobby, usually accompanying my wife Trần Lê Túy Phượng, aka singer Linh Phượng.

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