The Straits Times
Published on Jan 31, 2013

SK Holdings chief jailed as S. Korea gets tough on chaebol


SEOUL (REUTERS) - SK Holdings Co Ltd's chairman Chey Tae Won was jailed for four years on embezzlement charges, a Seoul court ruled on Thursday, underscoring South Korea's tough stance against crimes by business leaders and its family-owned "chaebol" conglomerates.

Chey was sent straight to prison.

The chaebol have been credited with leading the rapid growth of Asia's fourth-largest economy but have come under increasing criticism for lack of transparency and poor corporate governance, as well as their overt influence over politics and society.

The Seoul Central District Court ruled on Thursday that SK Holdings Chairman Chey Tae Won embezzled nearly 50 billion won (S$56.5 million) in corporate funds of SK affiliates for personal use.