April 16, 2021

The employment ban on Samsung heir Lee Jae-yong remains controversial

The employment ban that was issued on Samsung heir Lee Jae-yong last month was unclear, claims an external compliance monitoring committee on Samsung Electronics and its affiliates. According to the committee’s leader — former Chief Justice Kim Ji-hyung — cited by The Korea Herald, there are unclear parts regarding the conditions and scope of the ban.

At the beginning of the year, Samsung heir Lee Jae-yong was sentenced to 2.5 years in prison on account of bribery, and by the end of January it became clear that the scion would not be looking for an appeal to overturn the sentence. Instead, Lee Jae-yong humbly accepted the court’s decision.

Following the trial, Lee Jae-yong was informed that he would be banned from working at Samsung Electronics for five years once the 2.5 years jail sentence will be concluded. This is in accordance with South Korean laws on economic crimes, which states that convicted businesspeople are not allowed to work for their companies for five years following their release.

Lee Jae-yong’s employment ban remains controversial

The external compliance monitoring committee believes that the employment ban on Lee Jae-yong was unclear, though the committee will advise Samsung Electronics to comply with the particular laws as it proceeds with the needed procedures.

In part, the controversy surrounding the employment ban stems from the fact that Lee Jae-yong is not a registered director, and although he holds the title of Samsung Electronics’ Vice Chairman, he hasn’t been paid by the company since 2019. Therefore, some parties believe that the employment ban on Lee Jae-yong may have been inappropriate.

Meanwhile, some shareholders have reportedly expressed their feelings on Wednesday and demanded Lee Jae-yong to be stripped of the title of Vice Chairman for the company.

It remains unclear if the employment ban may or may not be lifted or revised in the foreseeable future.

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