South Korea political scandal: Investigators detain ex-health minister

The special prosecution team on Wednesday had 48 hours to decide whether to request a formal arrest warrant for Moon Hyung-pyo.

By: AP | Seoul | Published:December 28, 2016 9:56 am

South Korean investigators have detained the country’s former health minister as they expand their inquiry into a corruption scandal involving impeached President Park Geun-hye.

The special prosecution team on Wednesday had 48 hours to decide whether to request a formal arrest warrant for Moon Hyung-pyo. Moon faces allegations that he pressured the National Pension Service to support a controversial merger deal between two Samsung affiliates last year, even though the fund’s stake in one of the companies lost an estimated hundreds of millions of dollars in value.

Samsung, the country’s largest business group, is under suspicion that it sponsored a longtime confidante of Park to win government backing for the merger that helped Samsung scion Lee Jae-yong promote a father-to-son transfer of leadership and boost corporate wealth at the group.

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