Samsung leader Lee set to stand trial for alleged unlawful use of sedative

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Seoul, Oct 12 (Businesshala) – Samsung Group leader Jay Y. Lee is set to stand trial on charges of illegal use of a controlled substance on Tuesday, as legal trouble continues to haunt the executive after he was released on parole in August. Used to be. Bribery punishment.

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Lee’s release raised expectations of market watchers that a flurry of major decisions had been thrown at Crown Jewel Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (005930.KS) and its affiliates, including a $17 billion chip factory in the United States. The plan was also included.

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But Lee is facing his legal troubles again, with the Seoul Central District Court set to hold the first hearing of a case in which Lee is suspected of receiving propofol – a sedative used in anesthesia – Outside medical purposes at a clinic in Seoul.

Under South Korean law, recipients of a controlled substance deemed illegally administered are liable to prosecution, as well as those who administer the drug.

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Lee’s lawyer has said his use was a hospital treatment and was not illegal. Staff at the clinic, who are being prosecuted separately, have denied wrongdoing.

Prosecutors were first made aware of the matter in 2020, but were advised to drop their investigation in March 2021 by an independent panel reviewing prosecution investigations. He continued to demand the maximum fine until as recently as June, before another police report of sedative use led the court to order a trial.

This offense carries a maximum prison term of five years or a maximum fine of Rs 50 million.

However, legal experts said they do not expect a maximum penalty if Lee is found guilty because propofol is less likely to be abused than many other controlled substances.

Lee was convicted of bribery and embezzlement in January and sentenced to 30 months in prison – including a year before his sentencing. He was released on parole in August, with the presidential office calling for public understanding, citing hopes he would help the country build “semiconductors and vaccines”.

Following its release, Samsung said it would invest $240 trillion over the next three years in areas such as chips and biopharmaceuticals. Lee has kept himself a low profile.

Lee was charged with stock-price manipulation and accounting fraud related to the $8 billion merger of the two Samsung firms in 2015, which held weekly hearings.

($1 = 1,199.6500 won)

Reporting by Joyce Lee; Editing by Christopher Cushing

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