Samsung Boss Lee Jae-Yong Receives Presidential Pardon in Bribery, Embezzlement Cases - Tricky Enough

Samsung Boss Lee Jae-Yong Receives Presidential Pardon in Bribery, Embezzlement Cases

Samsung head Lee Jae-Yong has been given a chance to "contribute to overcoming the economic crisis" of the country.

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The heir and de facto leader of Samsung group received a presidential pardon Friday, the latest example of South Korea's long tradition of freeing business leaders convicted of corruption on economic grounds.

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Billionaire Lee Jae-yong, who was convicted of bribery and embezzlement in January last year, will be "reinstated" to give him a chance to "contribute to overcoming the economic crisis" of the country, Justice Minister Han Dong-hoon said.

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Lee — the 278th-richest person in the world, according to Forbes, with a net worth of $7.9 billion (roughly Rs. 63,000) — was released on parole in August 2021, after serving 18 months in jail, just over half of his original sentence.

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Friday's pardon will allow him to fully return to work by lifting a post-prison employment restriction that had been set for five years.

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"Due to the global economic crisis, the dynamism and vitality of the national economy have deteriorated, and the economic slump is feared to be prolonged," the Justice Ministry said in a statement.

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The pardon was given so that Lee — as well as other high-level executives receiving pardons Friday — could "lead the country's continuous growth engine through active investment in technology and job creation," the ministry added.

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