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October 4, 2005 - Former Samsung Everland CEO Her Tae-hak and current Samsung Everland CEO Park Ro-bin were found guilty by the Seoul Central District Court on Tuesday on several counts, all relating to the illegal sale of 1.2 million shares to Lee Jay-yong, the only son of Samsung CEO Lee Kun-hee. The sales, which cost the company 96.8 billion won (US $92.8 million), were sold to Lee at $7 a share to make him a controlling shareholder in the Samsung Group in 1996.
Her has been sentenced to three years in prison with five years suspended, and Park to two in prison with three years suspended.
The ruling is an inauspicious one for Samsung, as rumors and finger-pointing have abounded lately over its complicated and possibly illegal corporate structure and suspicious political financing. A few have gone so far as to claim that Samsung’s new investment plan (which DigitalCamerInfo.com reported on just four days ago here) is only a ruse to distract the public from other illicit activity.