[THE INVESTOR] A Seoul court on Jan. 25 sentenced the head of major food maker Samyang to three years in prison for embezzling 5 billion won (US$44.30 million) of company funds.
The Seoul Northern District Court handed down the verdict to Chun In-chang, chairman of Samyang Foods. It also sentenced his wife and a CEO of the company, Kim Jeong-su, to a two-year prison term, suspended for three years.
Chun was immediately taken into custody after the ruling.
The couple were accused of siphoning off the money by having Samyang pay for packaging and ingredients to a supplier they had secretly set up, when it should have been paid to a Samyang affiliate.
The court also found them guilty of spending company funds for personal use, such as house repairs, vehicle leases and credit card payments.
But the court acquitted Chun of the breach of trust charge, ruling that a 2.95 billion-won loan he had approved to Samsung’s then ailing food franchise was a reasonable decision that had little adverse impact on the company’s finances.
By Ram Garikipati and newswires (email@example.com)