As of recent months the name Samsung has been synonymous with epic corporate failure, what with the disastrous product life of their (literally) smoking hot “phablet” the Galaxy Note 7. The initial rash of fiery accidents, followed by a slow and confusing product recall and replacement policy, and the shocking revelation that even the replacement Note 7 units also suffered from the self-destructive flaws of the initial batch, has done massive damage to the reputation of what was one of Korea’s first big global brands. Unfortunately for them their troubles are far from over, with news that their corporate headquarters in Seoul has just been raided by police.
Now before you take a logical leap, this police operation isn’t at all connected to Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 woes. Rather, according to The Guardian, the electronics company giant has found itself embroiled in its home country’s latest political maelstrom concerning President Park Geun-hye and her association with shaman and cult leader Choi Soon-sil, a correspondence that has been pegged by government investigators as an abuse of power due to President Park showing Choi classified documents and presidential speeches despite Choi not being a public official.
The thing is, Samsung has been alleged as one of the many businesses and corporations that have been, at Park’s behest, donating millions of dollars to Choi which is then funneled into the coffers of her cult, as well as funding her charitable foundations and ventures. Most damningly for the manufacturer according to the Yonhap news agency of South Korea, was the rumor that Samsung footed the bill for the formal equestrian dressage training of Choi’s daughter in Germany, an amount running up to a staggering $3 million that was diverted to a Choi-owned enterprise.
On Tuesday November 8, agents of South Korean state prosecutors forced their way into Samsung’s corporate HQ, carrying away boxfuls of documentation and other peripherals seized as evidence to the link between Samsung and Choi by way of President Park. In addition, eight banks were similarly raided by investigators.
As if the humiliation conga for Samsung thus far was not enough, the Korea Times reports that prosecution investigators are expected to summon the company executives for questioning alongside those of other firms that have been pegged as involved in the wide-scale scandal. All the while thousands of South Koreans have taken to the streets of Seoul and other cities in a general protest movement calling for Park to step down from the presidency.
The raid on Samsung wasn’t a first for the tech brand; investigators have dropped by back in 2008 to investigate suspicions of bribery by the company of slush funds to public officials. Samsung refused to comment further.
Photo Credit to www.ft.com
Photo Credit to www.ft.com