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Today, the board chairman of Samsung, Lee Sang-hoon, was indicted by South Korean prosecutors for illegally sabotaging a labor union. This comes after years of whispers about Samsung’s intolerance of labor unions, according to Bloomberg. Twenty-seven other people from Samsung and its partner companies have also been indicted.
The charges stem from 2013, when Sang-hoon was the CFO of Samsung. According to the Financial Times, prosecutors have called the group’s actions “an organised crime that mobilised the whole company to its full capacity.” They purportedly threatened to lower wages of employees who were involved in unions and pull business from companies that were friendly to unions, among other actions.
It’s just another installment in the saga of legal trouble that Samsung’s leaders have faced. Jay Y. Lee, the company’s Vice Chairman and grandson of Samsung’s founder, was found guilty of bribery and embezzlement by a South Korean court back in 2017. He was sentenced to five years in prison, but the court later reversed the decision and suspended the sentence.
It’s never good when your top officials are being indicted by your home country’s courts. Sang-hoon was appointed chairman in March, after a shakeup at Samsung. It remains to be seen what will happen with the company’s leadership and direction after this new development.