Jan 19, 2017

South Korea: Court denies arrest warrant for Samsung chief

The judge ruled early on Thursday that there was insufficient reason to arrest Mr Lee over accusations of bribery, embezzlement and perjury. Samsung has acknowledged making the payments but insists it did not expect anything in return. South Korea's special prosecutors had declared Mr Lee a criminal suspect and made a formal request for an arrest warrant earlier this week. Correspondents say prosecutors' hopes of stretching criminal proceedings to include the president may have been knocked off course by the refusal to issue a warrant against Mr Lee. Samsung is South Korea's most high-profile company, and its sales are equal to about a fifth of the country's GDP. Mr Lee is currently vice-chairman of Samsung Electronics but since his father, Lee Kun-hee, suffered a heart attack in 2014, he is considered de facto boss of the entire Samsung Group conglomerate.

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