Samsung and its heir-apparent Lee Jae-yong are under pressure due to a major corruption scandal in South Korea, which involves the country’s president.
Lee Jae-yong, the current vice chairman of Samsung, is accused of bribing president Park Geun-hye and Choi Soon-sil, one of her confidants, in exchange for help with the transfer of ownership from Lee’s father to him. South Korean prosecutors have called for Lee’s arrest. However, despite the serious allegations, there is a chance that Lee will not be arrested at all. This is due to the enormous importance of the company for South Korea’s economy. About 20% of the country’s export value comes from Samsung products. Punishing Samsung would likely also have negative consequences for the country.
Read more about the scandal here.
Update January 19: A judge has ruled that there is insufficient reason to arrest Mr. Lee over the accusations of bribery, embezzlement and perjury. The Seoul central district court will not issue a warrant for his arrest. (Read the story here).