Lotte Group chair to be grilled by South Korean prosecutors

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Shin Dong-bin, chairman of South Korean conglomerate Lotte Group, will be questioned today by prosecutors in Seoul in connection with the corruption scandal that led to former president Park Geun-hye’s impeachment and the arrest of Samsung heir apparent Lee Jae-yong.

Prosecutors investigating the bribery and influence-peddling scandal said on Thursday in a statement: “We’ve summoned Lotte chairman Shin Dong-bin for questioning at 9:30 am tomorrow as a witness.”

Mr Shin is among the highest-profile corporate leaders to be summoned by prosecutors in the wide-ranging investigation of Ms Park and her adviser Choi Soon-sil.

Last month at a preliminary hearing, Mr Lee of Samsung denied all charges against him – including bribery, embezzlement and perjury – after being arrested for his alleged role in the influence-peddling scandal that ultimately brought down the president.

Lotte Group was recently thrust into the geopolitical spotlight when it agreed to trade land needed to host a planned missile shield in South Korea, despite China’s warnings of business consequences were the US-built defence platform to proceed. Most of its 100 or more stores in China have been forced to close, though the group has said it will continue to invest there.

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