World Bulletin / News Desk
South Korea's disgraced former president Park Geun-hye was jailed for 24 years Friday for corruption, closing out a dramatic fall from grace for the country's first woman leader who became a figure of public fury and ridicule.
"The amount of bribery the accused received or demanded in collaboration with Choi amounts to more than 23 billion won ($21.7 million)," Judge Kim Se-Yoon said, referring to Park's secret confidante and long-time friend Choi Soon-sil.
"I sentence the accused to 24 years in prison and 18 billion won in fines."
Park, 66, had boycotted most of the trial in protest at being held in custody. She was not present in court for Friday's judgment which, in a rare move, was broadcast live on television.
The daughter of assassinated dictator Park Chung-hee, Park took office in 2013 as a conservative icon who cast herself in the role of the daughter of the nation -- incorruptible and beholden to none.
Less than four years later, she was impeached, stripped of all her powers and ousted from office on the back of months-long mass protests that brought millions onto the streets of Seoul and other cities.
The trigger was a snowballing graft scandal involving Park and Choi and accusations of graft, influence-peddling and taking bribes from corporate bigwigs in exchange for policy favors.
Much of the public anger was focused on Park's relationship with Choi and accusations that she let her childhood friend -- who held no formal position or security clearance -- meddle in state affairs, including high-level appointments and editing official speeches.Last Mod: 06 Nisan 2018, 11:20