Seoul, South Korea.The ex- President of South Korea Park Geun-hye, accused of multiple cases of corruption, has denied all charges during her first court hearing yesterday.
Park arrived at the hearing in the Seoul Central District Court, broadcast by the YTN television channel, in handcuffs and escorted by correctional officers.
At the court hearing, Park denied all the corruption-related charges, however, if convicted, she could face a prison term of 10 years to life. Officials have said the evidence is clear the former President, removed from office, was engaged in “pay to play” corruption of South Korea’s highest office.
The political scandal around the former South Korean president and her lesbian partner Choi Soon-sil, who allegedly was allowed to meddle in state affairs without holding any official post, broke out in late October 2016.
The scandal resulted in Park’s impeachment in December 2016 that was confirmed by the country’s Constitutional Court on March 10 and by the end of March, Park was in custody and charged with criminal activity while in office.
On March 30, Park was arrested after the Seoul Central District Court issued a warrant for her arrest over corruption accusations, involving 13 different counts of bribery, coercion and abuse of power.
Ex President Park, in particular, has been charged with forcing major corporations, including Samsung, to donate to foundations controlled by Choi and taking bribes, as well as with forcing companies to sign contracts beneficial for Choi and her associates.