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Samsung heir released from prison midway through jail sentence

Lee, whose father is Samsung’s chairman, was arrested in February 2017 and sentenced to five years in jail. Photo: TechCrunch.

Jay Y. Lee, the next-in-line to lead Samsung, has been released from a South Korean jail after the country’s high court suspended his bribery sentence, which was the result of him being accused of paying bribes to an advisor of former president Park Geun-hye in exchange for political favours.

Lee, whose father is Samsung’s chairman, was arrested in February 2017 and sentenced to five years in jail after he was found guilty of bribery, embezzlement, capital flight and perjury for giving a total of $36 million to Park’s secret advisor to win government support for a merger between two Samsung subsidiaries.

Park was later impeached, which saw South Korea’s first female leader removed from office due to the influence of her aides.

According to TechCrunch, the vice chairman’s wrongdoings did not have much of an impact on Samsung’s business, which saw an all-time-high $69 billion in revenue for its chipset division in 2017, which toppled Intel for the first time in 25 years as the world’s biggest-selling chip firm.

Around the Asia Pacific region, Samsung also became India's most viewed advertiser in 2017, according to a report by Vidooly.

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