South Korea's President Removed From Power After Impeachment

Posted March 12, 2017

In what is being called "the trial of the century", the heir to the Samsung empire went on trial Thursday alleged to have made payments of up to $38 million to Park and her adviser Choi Soon-sil.

Ms Choi meanwhile has been charged with bribery and corruption for allegedly pressuring big companies to give money in return for government favours.

Park's mother is killed by a bullet fired by a pro-North Korea assassin trying to kill her father, President Park Chung-hee.

Park is the first South Korean President to have been formally impeached.

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Booting her from office, judge Lee Jung-mi said the president had violated the constitution "throughout her term". Park's Liberty Korea Party, formerly known as Saenuri, has yet to put forth a viable presidential candidate.

The unrest follows the announcement of impeachment of Park Geun-hye - the first woman to be elected president in South Korea - which was broadcast live to crowds in Seoul on Friday.

"We demand the arrest of Park Geun-hye and the resignation of acting president Hwang Kyo-ahn", said Choi In-sook, a spokeswoman for protesters, told Reuters.

All up, Park faced 13 charges, and massive rallies from the citizens of South Korea in recent weeks calling for her final impeachment. Moon Jae-in, liberal and leader of the Democratic Party, is now ahead in the polls.

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Subsequent to the verdict, an official with South Korea's unification ministry was quoted as saying: "Despite the decision, the ministry plans to unwaveringly seek the country's policy on North Korea and unification". Well, I guess the big question now is how soon prosecutors will summon her for questioning and what kind of punishment she will face if found guilty of the multiple charges against her. Thank you, Ho-jun, for that. In a written submission to the court on February 27, she said, "I have never been involved in corruption or graft during my political journey". He and Samsung have denied wrongdoing.

Park has also been accused of supporting two foundations controlled by Choi for her friend's "pursuit of personal interests" and Park's unconstitutional and law-breaking activities were continually carried out while she was in office, the verdict said.

While the independent counsel focused on Samsung Group and Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong, pundits say that the prosecutors' office is likely to widen its probe, bringing SK, Lotte and CJ groups under the spotlight.

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