"We will make a decision tomorrow on whether to seek an arrest warrant… We needed more time as the case is very important and there are many things to consider," the prosecutor team's spokesman, Lee Kyu-chul, was quoted as saying by the Korea Times newspaper.
On January 11, media reported that Lee was summoned by the special investigation team over allegations of bribery. Based on the information gathered during the corruption probe, Lee is suspected of striking a contract with Park's friend, Choi Soon-sil, wherein he gave 22 billion wan ($18.3 million) in financial support to a German-based company owned by Choi in return for business-related favors.
Choi, using her close ties with the president, allegedly put pressure on the South Korean pension fund so that it approved a merge of Samsung and Cheil Industries Inc companies. The pension fund owned 11.6 percent of stocks in Samsung and five percent in Cheil Industries Inc.
On January 13, media reported that Lee's questioning lasted 22 hours. He rejected most of suspicions regarding Samsung's involvement into the scandal, but claimed Park forced Samsung Company to provide money to the organizations linked to Choi.
On December 9, 2016, South Korea's parliament voted in favor of removing Park from office as the president was at the center of a scandal around Choi, who is said to have pressured the country's biggest corporations and extorted money from them for her non-commercial funds abroad.
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