Prosecutors looking into former President Lee Myung-bak’s alleged ownership of a private company run by his extended family members suspect he was also the real owner of an expensive strip of land in Seoul once owned by his family members.
According to law enforcement authorities on Tuesday, the prosecution has secured evidence that part of the proceeds from the sale of land in Dogok-dong, an affluent neighborhood in southern Seoul, went to Lee Si-hyung, the only son of the former President.
Before the land was sold in 1995, it was owned jointly by the ex-president’s elder brother Lee Sang-eun and the ex-president's brother-in-law, but, according to the Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office, Lee Sang-eun’s son, Lee Dong-hyung, gave his father’s bankbook containing part of the proceeds from the land sales to Lee Si-hyung when he demanded it in 2013.
The prosecution is known to have secured documents revealing the secret financial transactions as well as related testimony from Lee Dong-hyung.
The prosecution believes Lee Si-hyung has already spent more than one billion won from the bank account, adding he could not have done so if his father had not been the real owner of the land.
The former president is also suspected of creating slush funds through DAS, a company nominally run by his close relatives.