S.Korea prosecutors seek four-year jail term for Lotte group chief

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SEOUL (Dec 14): South Korea's prosecutors are seeking a four-year jail term and a fine of 7 billion won (US$6.44 million) for Lotte Group chief Shin Dong-bin over a bribery scandal involving former President Park Geun-hye and her close friend Choi Soon-shil, a Lotte spokesman said on Thursday.

Prosecutors have asked for a 25-year jail sentence and a fine of 126.3 billion won for Choi, who was indicted last year on charges of forcing conglomerates such as Samsung Group and Lotte Corp to donate millions to foundations, Yonhap news said.

Prosecutors accused Shin of paying bribes totaling 7 billion won to an organisation linked to Choi in return for government favours in offering a duty free license, the spokesman said. Shin denied charges during trials.

In August, Jay Y. Lee, the head of South Korea’s top conglomerate Samsung Group, was sentenced to five years in jail over the bribery scandal.

In a separate corruption probe, South Korean prosecutors in October demanded a 10-year jail term for Shin. He faces a ruling on the corruption charges later this month.

(US$1 = 1,087.8000 won)