New retrial ordered for South Korea's ex-leader Park

  • World
  • Thursday, 28 Nov 2019

File photo of South Korea's ousted president Park Geun-Hye arriving at the Seoul Central District Court in Seoul for her trial in August 2017.

SEOUL: (AFP) South Korea's top court on Thursday ordered a second retrial for disgraced former president Park Geun-hye, seeking heavier punishment for illegally taking money from the country's spy agency.

Park, the country's first female president, was impeached in 2017 after huge street protests over a sprawling scandal, and already faces a separate retrial for corruption and abuse of power that could add to her 25-year jail term.

Thursday's ruling came after an appeals court reduced Park's sentence by one year to five years in prison in proceedings for pocketing money from the National Intelligence Service.

The Supreme Court said in a statement that the charges dropped on appeal had "misunderstood the legal principles" and ordered Park "should be found guilty".

The penalties in the two cases apply consecutively, meaning the 67-year-old is currently due to be approaching 100 by the time she is set to be released.

Her corruption scandal exposed shady links between big businesses and politics in South Korea, with Park and her close friend Choi Soon-sil accused of taking bribes from conglomerates, including Samsung Electronics, in exchange for preferential treatment. - AFP

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