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Prosecutors suspend execution of CJ chief's jail term

All News 16:34 July 22, 2016

SEOUL, July 22 (Yonhap) -- Prosecutors said Friday they have accepted a request from the chairman of the food and entertainment conglomerate CJ Group to suspend the execution of his 30-month jail term for hospital treatment.

The Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office decided to suspend the sentence for Lee Jay-hyun for three months.

The custody of Lee, who is currently in a hospital, was suspended several times due to his illnesses.

The prosecution's announcement came a few days after the ailing chairman, convicted of embezzlement, tax evasion and breach of trust, dropped his re-appeal with the Supreme Court on Tuesday. The business tycoon had filed an appeal with the top court for the second time in December, saying he is innocent of the breach of trust charges.

Lee's decision was known to have taken into consideration the possibility that he could be included in next month's planned special pardon by President Park Geun-hye.

The CJ Group said earlier that Lee dropped the re-appeal as it was "physically and mentally difficult for him to continue a trial."

At the same time, Lee had asked the prosecution to suspend the sentence, citing health reasons.

Prosecutors said the conclusion was reached by a committee that included doctors, and whether or not to prolong the stay of execution will be determined three months later.

Lee, who has undergone a kidney transplant, claims that he suffers from multiple illnesses, including Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and kidney disease.

Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease is an inherited neurological disease characterized by the slow, progressive degeneration of the muscles in the feet, lower legs and hands.


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