Court rejects jail for Hyundai boss

Judges say tycoon is too important for South Korea's economy to be jailed.

    Chung's community service will include giving talks on business ethics [GALLO/GETTY]

    "The court has been agonising over whether to put the accused in jail or keep him out of prison," said chief judge Lee Jae-Hong.

     

    "But in consideration of the huge economic impact that could result from imprisonment, it decided to suspend the sentence."

     

    "I am also a citizen of the Republic of Korea," Lee added. "I was unwilling to engage in a gamble that would put the nation's economy at risk."

     

    Slush fund

     

    Prosecutors had accused the Chung family of using the embezzled cash to run a slush fund for bribing government officials, politicians and bankers in return for business favours.

     

    They had urged the appeal court to double the original jail term.

     

    Part of Chung's community service will include delivering speeches and writing articles on the need for ethics in business.

     

    He will also be expected to good on his pledge to donate $1bn to charity.

     

    Hyundai, which includes affiliate Kia Motors, controls 70 per cent of the country's auto market and accounts for 5.4 per cent of South Korea's gross domestic product.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Lost childhoods: Nigeria's fear of 'witchcraft' ruins young lives

    Lost childhoods: Nigeria's fear of 'witchcraft' ruins young lives

    Many Pentecostal churches in the Niger Delta offer to deliver people from witchcraft and possession - albeit for a fee.

    The priceless racism of the Duke of Edinburgh

    The priceless racism of the Duke of Edinburgh

    Prince Philip has done the world an extraordinary service by exposing the racist hypocrisy of "Western civilisation".

    China will determine the future of Venezuela

    China will determine the future of Venezuela

    There are a number of reasons why Beijing continues to back Maduro's government despite suffering financial losses.