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Samsung executives to be questioned by Korean prosecutors

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Choi Gee Sung

Choi Gee Sung

Samsung executives have been summoned by South Korean special prosecutors amid a widening influence-peddling scandal that brought about South Korean President Park Geun-hye’s impeachment.

Samsung Corporate Strategy Office Vice Chairman Choi Gee-sung and President Chang Choong-ki were asked to come in for questioning, Hong Jung-seok, a spokesperson for the special prosecutors office, told Bloomberg News via text message on Sunday. Choi and Chang are expected by 10 a.m. on Monday and they will come in as testifiers, meaning they have not been accused of wrongdoing. This status may change, Hong said.

The summons follows last month’s parliamentary grilling of Jay Y. Lee, de-facto head of Samsung Group, and a co-vice chair of Samsung Electronics, the world’s largest maker of mobile devices. Lawmakers questioned Lee about whether the country’s biggest conglomerate received political favors in return for donations to foundations controlled by Choi Soon-sil, the president’s friend at the center of the scandal. Lee had denied allegations during the hearing.

A Samsung Group spokeswoman declined to comment when contacted by the Bloomberg News.

In preliminary results posted last Friday, Samsung Electronics reported its best operating profit in three years, bouncing back from the crisis of its fire-prone Galaxy Note 7 smartphone. The Suwon, South Korea-based company posted a 50 percent surge in profit as strong demand for the chips and displays it makes for other smartphone makers lifted results.



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