Former Taekwang chair sentenced to three years

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Former Taekwang chair sentenced to three years

A Seoul appellate court on Friday sentenced former Taekwang Group Chairman Lee Ho-jin to three years in prison for embezzlement.

Chances are high that Lee’s sentence will be upheld by the top court later. In October last year, the Supreme Court ordered the case to be reviewed, citing procedural errors regarding some of the tax evasion charges.

Lee was accused of siphoning off 20.6 billion won ($18.2 million) of company funds by doctoring output figures of Taekwang’s textile business. He was also charged with allegedly evading 560 million won in taxes.

Regarding the tax evasion charges, the Seoul High Court sentenced him to six months in prison, which will be suspended for two years. He was originally sentenced to four and a half years in prison. But he was freed in May 2011 after only serving two months in jail, as the court approved his bail request on grounds of health problems and suspended his confinement.

But speculation mounted last year that he might have lied to the court about his health to be released from detention. Lee was spotted by the local media eating snacks outside. In December, the court withdrew his bail, and Lee was taken into custody.

Taekwang is textile and media conglomerate with 8 trillion won in assets.

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