Lee’s brother to be summoned in corruption probe
Prosecutors plan to question President Lee Myung-bak’s elder brother Lee Sang-deuk next Tuesday on suspicion of taking bribes from a savings bank, officials said Thursday.
The prosecutors have been investigating the source of some 700 million won ($624,000) in his bank account found last year during an inquiry into a separate scandal involving his associates.
In March, they were tipped off that Prime Savings Bank had bribed the former six-term lawmaker of the ruling Saenuri Party before it was suspended in September due to its failure to meet regulatory capital requirements.
Prosecutors suspect the 700 million won may be part of the money the bank allegedly gave Lee in exchange for using his influence to prevent a shutdown.
Lee has denied all the suspicions. His aides said the money was part of operational costs for his office and had nothing to do with the savings bank.
Lee is also suspected of being illegally lobbied by Lim Suk, chairman of another suspended savings bank.
Lim was arrested in May for embezzling 17 billion won and arranging illegal loans of 150 billion won.
The prosecutors refused to give details of his charges.
Lee has been embroiled in a series of major corruption scandals, including illegal lobbying by SLS Group and an illegal donation for party nomination, but this will be first time that he will be summoned by prosecutors.