S.Korea prosecutors seek arrest of Samsung heir

The Special Prosecutors' Office allege that Samsung Electronics spent 43 billion won ($36.4 million) to bribe Choi Soon-sil, a longtime friend of President Park Geun-hye, under the watch of Lee.

While most countries would have no problem locking a businessman up if they think he has committed a crime, South Korea has to factor in the economic impact the arrest will cause.

Also on Monday, the Constitutional Court held its fifth hearing of Park's impeachment trial where Choi appeared and denied any wrongdoing in her interactions with the president.

Samsung has acknowledged providing funds to the three institutions but has repeatedly denied accusations of lobbying to push through the merger. The outlet said Samsung made two more donations in the following months, becoming Choi's biggest contributor among local companies.

The announcement sent the share price of Samsung Electronics falling 2.14 percent, shaving billions off its market capitalisation.

Jay Y. Lee is the defacto head of the conglomerate, as he is the only son of chairman Lee Kun-hee, who is incapacitated.

Samsung allegedly donated funds to various entities controlled by Choi Soon-sil, the jailed secretive confidante of the president, including two non-profit foundations and a winter sports centre run by Choi's niece.

Patriots oust Texans, advance to another AFC title game
Time and again, Roethlisberger and the Steelers drove easily into the red zone and then had to settle for field goals. The list of quarterbacks who would have put the Texans in a better position to win, however, is a lengthy one.

The head of Samsung is also accused of embezzlement and perjury, according to the prosecution's application for an arrest warrant, Reuters reports.

Her daughter, 20-year-old Chung Yoo-ra, was arrested by Danish police early this month after she was sought by South Korean authorities.

The recent scandal focuses on Choi's close friendship to Park. "We are examining the related testimony and evidentiary materials to date and carefully considering the legal principles for the criminal acts in question", said team spokesperson Lee Gyu-cheol in a regular briefing on January 15.

The special prosecutors' office is seeking the arrest of following 22-straight-hours of questioning last week.

But prosecutors are accusing Lee and Samsung of making the payments to secure the National Pension Service's backing for the 2015 merger.

On December 9, Park was impeached after members of parliament voted (234 to 64) to suspend her powers.


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