According to the South Korean legal community on the 16th, South Korea’s Ministry of Justice issued a notice of employment restrictions on Samsung Electronics Vice President Lee Jae-woo, who was sentenced to two years and six months in prison for a cronies’ interference in politics case.
According to the provisions of the Law on Aggravating Punishment for Economic Crimes, a person who commits the crime of embezzlement and dereliction of duty and the crime amount exceeds 500 million won (about 3 million yuan) shall restrict their employment within five years from the date of the completion of the execution of the fixed-term imprisonment or the decision not to execute.
Restricted areas include wholly or partially funded institutions of the central and local governments in South Korea and institutions that receive government funding or subsidies, as well as enterprises closely related to criminal acts.
So far, Samsung has not commented on the employment restriction notice issued by the Ministry of Justice of South Korea on Lee Jae-woo.
South Korean media pointed out that given that the scope of the employment ban includes enterprises closely related to criminal acts, that is to say, even if Lee Jae-ye’s release from prison in July next year, he will not return to his business position until the second half of 2027.
During this period, he may have to resign as vice president of Samsung Electronics. Although as a major shareholder, he can indirectly participate in the operation of the company, he cannot directly participate in the law; therefore, it may have an impact on Samsung Electronics’ decision-making.
However, some business people also point out that this employment restriction is limited to new employment and has no impact on existing positions or status. It is also pointed out that the state’s restrictions on the employment of private enterprise operators violate the constitutional right to freedom of choice of employment.
In addition, Lee Jae ended the four-week quarantine in Seoul Prison in Daoyiwang City, Gyeonggi on the 15th, transferred to the ordinary prison to serve his sentence, and from the 17th, he could receive visits from outside personnel, including the lawyer’s team and relatives.
Previously, only Li Zailu’s lawyer could visit him briefly. South Korea’s financial circles therefore believe that considering that Lee Jae-ying can meet with external visitors, Samsung Electronics’ major business decisions are expected to be further accelerated from now on.
On January 18, Li Zaiying was sentenced to two years and six months in prison for his cronies in politics and was arrested in court.
Since Lee Jae was detained in the detention center for about one year after his arrest in February 2017, the remaining sentence is one year and six months.
He will be released from prison in July 2022.