“A South Korean court approved on Friday the arrest of a billionaire heir to Samsung accused of bribery and other charges in connection to a massive corruption scandal, a stunning decline for the princeling of South Korea’s richest family,” Youkyung Lee reports for Reuters. “The Seoul Central District Court’s decision to issue a warrant to arrest Lee Jae-yong, 48, a vice chairman at Samsung Electronics and the only son of Samsung chair Lee Kun-hee.”

“The arrest of Samsung’s de facto leader will likely shock the business community and cheer the critics of chaebol, the South Korean family-controlled business conglomerates that dominate the economy,” Lee reports. “It was seen as a test of the country’s judicial system that in the past had been lenient toward the powerful business elite families at chaebol for their white collar crimes, citing their contributions to the national economy.”

“The court dismissed prosecutors’ request to arrest Park Sang-jin, a president at Samsung Electronics overseeing external relations, saying that it was difficult to justify Park’s arrest given his position and role within the company,” Lee reports. “Local media reported that Lee was sent to solitary confinement… Prosecutors accused Lee of giving bribes worth $36 million to President Park Geun-hye and her close friend Choi Soon-sil to win government favors for a smooth company leadership transition. They are also investigating Lee on allegations of embezzlement of Samsung funds, hiding assets overseas and lying under oath during a parliamentary hearing.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: An arrest is one thing. A conviction is quite another.

Samsung is intertwined into South Korea like a stage IV cancer.

We’ll see how the Republic of Samsung ultimately adjudicates Lee Jae-yong.

SEE ALSO:
South Korean prosecution again seeks arrest of Samsung chief – February 14, 2017
Samsung heir Lee Jae-yong escapes arrest in massive bribery scandal – January 20, 2017
South Korea attempting to handicap Apple by demanding the removal of preinstalled apps like the App Store – July 7, 2016
Korea Fair Trade Commission clears Samsung’s use of standard-essential patents against Apple – February 27, 2014
South Korea, the Republic of Samsung – December 10, 2012
Welcome to South Korea, the ‘Republic of Forgery’ – September 11, 2012
Samsung’s ‘Instinct’ is obviously to make Apple iPhone knockoffs – April 1, 2008

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Fred Mertz,” “Nick P.,” “Scott M.,” “Chris Renaldi,” “botvinnik,” “wirehead,” and “Edward W.” for the heads up.]