SEOUL – A Samsung Electronics vice chairman said on Tuesday the company will engage in speed management, a day after its heir and de facto leader was released from prison.
Lee Jae-yong was released on Monday following a court’s decision to give him a suspended sentence and authorized his release from prison by acquitting him of several charges related to a massive corruption scandal.
Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Yoon Boo-keun made the comments in a brief meeting with reporters after attending a forum in central Seoul, local agency Yonhap reported on Tuesday.
Yoon, who did not provide any further details, has been the first top official to comment since Lee was released after the Seoul High Court Monday reduced Lee’s sentence in the “Rasputin” graft scandal to a suspended sentence.
After appealing his five-year sentence, the court reduced Lee’s sentence of two and a half years in prison, and allowed him to immediately leave the correctional facility where he had been detained for almost a year.
The judges have considered that it has not been proven that the company obtained government favors within the framework of the influence peddling scheme by the former South Korean President Park Geun-hye and her close friend Choi Soon-sil, who has been dubbed the “South Korean Rasputin,” although they considered Lee guilty of granting financial favors to Choi’s daughter.
There is speculation that Lee on Friday may attend the opening ceremony of the PyeongChang Winter Olympics which are going to be held in the South Korean county of PyeongChang.
Lee’s father, Lee Kun-hee, played a key role in getting PyeongChang selected in 2011 as the venue for the Winter Games in which Samsung is one of the main sponsors.
Lee took charge of the company in May 2014 after his father suffered a heart attack which left him incapacitated.
After closing on a positive note due to Lee’s release on Monday – when there was a general slump in stock prices – Samsung shares fell by around 2 percent on Tuesday at the Seoul Stock Exchange, in a session hit by the big dip on Wall Street.