Daughter of ousted South Korean president's confidante arrested in flight

Daughter of ousted South Korean president's confidante arrested in flight
A file photo of Chung Yoo Ra after winning the gold in the equestrian dressage team competition at the 2014 Asian Games.
PHOTO: AFP

SEOUL - The daughter of the woman at the centre of a corruption scandal that led to the ousting of South Korea's president was arrested by prosecutors on a plane bound for Seoul, reports said on Wednesday (May 31).

Chung Yoo Ra, 20, was arrested immediately after boarding a Korean Air flight from Amsterdam to Incheon early Wednesday morning after being extradited from Denmark a day earlier, Yonhap news agency said citing Seoul prosecutors.

Chung is the only child of Choi Soon Sil, the close confidante of former President Park Geun Hye.

Choi - nicknamed "Rasputin" for her close influence over the then-president - is a key figure in the influence-peddling scandal that sparked huge street protests demanding Park's ousting.

Park and Choi are already on trial for allegedly accepting or seeking millions of dollars in bribes from conglomerates including Samsung.

Chung, who was arrested by Danish police in January, dropped her appeal against extradition from Denmark, a Danish court announced last week, as Seoul wants to detain her for questioning.

The daughter is the alleged beneficiary of millions of dollars which South Korea's largest conglomerate Samsung paid to finance her equestrian training and luxurious lifestyle in Europe.

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A team of five officials from the prosecutors' office was dispatched to Amsterdam to make the arrest with a pre-issued warrant, Yonhap said.

It added that the prosecutors waited until Chung boarded the Korean Air flight, since South Korea's jurisdiction can be exercised on its national carrier.

Upon arrival at Incheon International Airport later on Wednesday, Chung is expected to make a short statement to the press and taken to the Seoul Prosecutors' Office for questioning.

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