21:05 GMT +325 June 2019
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    Lee Myung-bak. File photo

    South Korean Court Grants Bail to Former President Lee in Bribery Case - Reports

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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Former President of South Korea Lee Myung-bak has been released from prison on bail after almost a year of detention on corruption and embezzlement charges, Korea Times newspaper reported on Wednesday, citing the Seoul High Court.

    Lee, a former Hyundai executive, served as the country's president between 2008 and 2013. He was arrested on charges of abuse of power, embezzlement, bribery and tax evasion in March 2018. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison in October.

    READ MORE: Ex-S Korean President Lee Myung-bak Sentenced to 15 Years in Jail for Corruption

    Lee's lawyers reportedly filed a request for his release on bail on January 29, citing, in particular, his ailing health, the Korea Times newspaper reported.

    According to the court's decision, the former head of state must permanently stay inside his residence, and only family and legal representatives are allowed to visit him. He has also been ordered to pay 1 billion won ($886,000) as a security deposit. Lee accepted the conditions of his release and left Seoul Eastern Detention Center later on Wednesday.

    "By allowing release on bail, the arrest warrant will technically remain in effect and Lee can be sent back to the detention centre if he breaks any of the conditions," presiding Judge Jung Jun-young said, as cited by the newspaper.

    Lee is not the only South Korean leader detained over corruption. His successor, Park Geun-hye, was impeached in December 2016 as a result of a bribery scandal and is currently serving her 25-year prison term.


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