01/14/2021, 09.18
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Seoul, 20 years in prison for former president Park Geun-hye

The prosecutor asked for the reinstatement of a first and second degree sentence of 30 years. She will be released from prison in 2039. Park Geun-hye is the fourth South Korean president to end up in jail: her predecessor Lee Myung-bak is serving a 17-year sentence.

Seoul (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The Supreme Court today confirmed the sentence of 20 years in prison for former President Park Geun-hye. The sentence includes the payment of a fine of 18 billion won (13 million euros).

The trial closed after three years of twists and turns: the prosecutor had petitioned for the restoration of the first verdict, which had established 30 years of imprisonment for corruption, abuse of authority and disclosure of state secrets.

68-year-old Park is the daughter of Park Chung-hee, the country's former strongman. South Korea's first female president, and first to be impeached, she was removed from office in 2017.

Prosecutors accused her of collaborating with her friend Choi Soon-sil to force dozens of companies - including the giant Samsung - to make "donations" to two foundations controlled by Choi for a total of 77.4 billion won. (58 million euros).

In addition to 20 years of imprisonment for corruption, there are two more for illegally interfering in the decision-making processes of the nationalist Saenuri Party, in power during her term. Given her time in prison, Park will finish serving her sentence in 2039.

Park is the fourth South Korean president to be sentenced. Her predecessor Lee Myung-bak has been in prison since November serving a 17-year sentence: judges found him guilty of corruption and embezzlement. Roh Tae-woo and Chun Doo-hwan spent two years in jail for insurrection and for organizing a coup: both were pardoned in 1997.

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