Samsung's Lee Jae Yong reinforces his legal team by changing lawyer ahead of appeal

Lee Jae Yong, Samsung Group heir, leaves after his verdict trial at the Seoul Central District Court in South Korea, on Aug 25, 2017.
Lee Jae Yong, Samsung Group heir, leaves after his verdict trial at the Seoul Central District Court in South Korea, on Aug 25, 2017. PHOTO: REUTERS

SEOUL (REUTERS) - Samsung Electronics vice-chairman Lee Jae Yong has replaced his lawyer ahead of an appeal against the five-year jail term he was given for bribery and other charges, a spokesman for his law firm said on Thursday (Sept 7).

Attorney Song Wu Cheol was replaced by Lee In Jae, a more senior representative attorney at law firm Bae, Kim & Lee to reinforce Lee Jae Yong's legal team, the spokesman said without elaborating.

Lee Jae Yong, the 49-year-old billionaire heir to one of the world's biggest corporate empires, was detained in February on charges that he bribed then-president Park Geun Hye to help him secure control of the conglomerate that owns Samsung Electronics, the world's leading smartphone and chip maker.

The appeals court is expected to make its ruling around January, with hearings likely to begin this month (September).

Attorney Lee has served as chief judge at several courts including Seoul Central District Court before moving to the law firm in 2010, according to his profile on the law firm's website.

His major practice areas include finance and corporate criminal matters.