Pigeon’s founder sentenced to jail

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Pigeon’s founder sentenced to jail


The Seoul Central District Court yesterday sentenced Pigeon Corporation’s founder Lee Yoon-chai to 10 months in prison for hiring three gang members to assault a former Pigeon executive who sued the company.

Lee has also been detained under court custody. “We have placed the defendant under court custody, though he is old and in poor health,” the judge said. “But we worry that he could flee after being sentenced.”

The judge added, “Heavy punishment for Lee is inevitable, given the fact that he committed the violence [against the victim] after media began criticizing his company and even helped the gangsters he hired to run away.”

After the ruling, Lee had few words for reporters. “I have nothing to say,” he said.

In September, gangsters hired by Lee assaulted former executive Lee Eun-wook, who sued Pigeon for wrongful termination in August after he was fired by the company.

One of the founder’s aides admitted to police that Lee had ordered him to hire the gangsters and pay them 300 million won ($265,134) in total.

The aide was sentenced to eight months in prison as well.

By Chae Yoon-kyung, Kim Hee-jin [heejin@joongang.co.kr]
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