Former South Korean president, Lee Myung-bak ordered back to prison for 17 years over bribery and embezzlement offences



Former South Korean president, Lee Myung-bak was ordered back to prison on Thursday, October 29, after the country's Supreme Court upheld a 17-year jail term for bribery and embezzlement offenses in connection with his brother's auto parts company DAS.

Lee Myung-bak, who served as president from 2008 to 2013, had been out on bail awaiting the ruling. 

After the court's decision today, the 78-year-old was taken away from his Seoul home by Police. 

Lee was first convicted of embezzlement and accepting bribes in late 2018 and jailed. An appeals court later increased his sentence to 17 years but granted him bail pending a further appeal to the nation's highest court.

On Thursday, the Supreme Court upheld his conviction for embezzling 25.2 billion won (US$22 million) and accepting bribes totalling 9.4 billion won, as well as the 17-year sentence.

Lee was also fined 13-billion-won and must forfeit assets of 5.7 billion won.

"There was no legal fallacy in the appellate court's ruling on bribery and embezzlement," the Supreme Court said in a statement.

Lee's conservative successor, Park Geun-hye is currently serving 20 years in jail for bribery and abuse of power after being ousted in 2017 over a corruption scandal. 

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