South Korean prosecutors requested on Tuesday a 30-year prison sentence for disgraced former South Korean president Park Geun-hye, who was impeached last year in a sensational corruption scandal.
The requested term, if granted, would be tantamount to a life sentence for Park, who is 66. Prosecutors also asked the Seoul Central District Court to fine her $110 million for her alleged crimes.
The court is expected to deliver its verdict and impose a sentence in late March or early April.
“Park is the person who is ultimately accountable for this influence-peddling scandal,” the prosecutor told Judge Kim Se-kyoon.
“This scandal left an indelible stain on our country’s history. However, it also gave rise to a meaningful movement among its citizens to reestablish democracy and rule of law,” he said, according to local reports from the courtroom.
Park is facing 18 charges including bribery, coercion and abuse of power for her role in a plan to extort millions of dollars from South Korea’s biggest businesses for her personal gain. Her confidante Choi Soon-sil, the woman who carried out their extortion plans, was found guilty earlier this month and sentenced to 20 years in prison.
Park has vigorously maintained her innocence throughout the case and has been refusing to attend her trial, saying she is the victim of “political revenge.” She did not appear in court when the prosecutors argued for the 30-year sentence.
(c) 2018, The Washington Post · Anna Fifield