On February 13, the Seoul Central District Court sentenced Shin Dong-bin, the Lotte Group chairman, to two years and six months of imprisonment for bribery tied to an influence-peddling scandal that led to the impeachment of the former president (see our Newsletter of 04/24/2017).
The Seoul Central District Court said that Shin Dong-bin offered 7 billion won (USD 6.5 million) in bribery to the former president to obtain favors such as winning a license to open a duty free shop. The same day, Choi Soon-sil
– a close friend of former President Park Geun-hye – was sentenced to 20 years in jail for corruption, influence-peddling and abuse of power. Choi was accused of using her presidential connections to pressure conglomerates – including electronics giant Samsung and Lotte Group – to donate millions of dollars to two non-profit foundations she controlled (see our Newsletter of 12/18/2017).