By: Lee Kyung-min

Prosecutors questioned two key aides of former Prime Minister Lee Wan-koo and South Gyeongsang Province Governor Hong-Joon-pyo Wednesday as part of a widening investigation into the bribery allegations surrounding the late Keangnam Enterprises Chairman Sung Woan-jong.

Lee and Hong are expected to be the first to face summonses among the eight people mentioned in the handwritten “bribery memo” left by Sung before he committed suicide on April 6.

Depending on the initial investigations into the aides, the prosecution will determine whether to issue summonses for Lee and Hong, sources said.

The prosecution questioned both the aides over their superiors’ whereabouts at the time when the alleged bribes were delivered.

The aides managed meeting schedules for their bosses at the time, the prosecution said.

Lee is suspected of receiving 30 million won packed in a Vita 500 energy drink box from Sung during the 2013 election campaign.

Hong is suspected of receiving 100 million won from then Keangnam Vice President Yun Seung-mo in 2011.

The prosecution said they would compare the testimonies from the two aides with those from Sung’s chauffeur and his key aide who have already been questioned.

Already, former Keangnam executives ― Park Jun-ho, and Lee Yong-ki ― have been put behind bars for destroying evidence at the firm’s headquarters before a prosecution raid.

Prosecutors have also reportedly obtained some of Keangnam’s accounting books and completed analysis of phone records and tracked the movements of Sung’s key aides.

Park reportedly admitted his involvement in removing evidence, adding that he had no choice but to follow Sung’s orders because he was afraid of losing his job.

SOURCE: THE KOREA TIMES