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Hyundai chief gets 3yr fraud sentence

Hyundai chief gets 3yr fraud sentence

A leading executive from motor company Hyundai has been sentenced to three years in prison by a South Korean court for fraud, breach of trust and embezzlement.

The company's chairman Chung Mong Koo was accused by the prosecution of siphoning almost $100 million from Hyundai and other group units.

The bribery scandal has rocked the South Korea's largest carmaker after Mr Chung was arrested in April 2006 and charged with embezzling million of dollars of funds and weakening Hyundai's finances.

Seoul Central District Court found Mr Chung guilty of embezzling money into slush funds for political campaigns and his own private use. Some of the cash was used for undeclared employee bonuses and to bribe politicians and government officials.

The 68-year-old Hyundai chairman will remain free on bail during the appeals process and is free to carry out his daily duties at the company.

Mr Chung spent two months in jail following his arrest in April, before being released on bail of one billion won in June and returning to work. His lawyers had argued that his absence had a negative effect on company finances, caused delays and had exacerbated existing management problems.

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