South Korean prosecutors are asking for a 6-year jail term forMotor Group Chairman Chung Mong-koo on charges of embezzlement and breach of trust.
The request wraps up more than nine months of investigations and court proceedings that began with a raid onheadquarters last March.
The court will sentence Chung Feb. 5.
“We are hoping the courts will not find him guilty or will suspend any sentence imposed, so that he can carry on with his work,” a Hyundai spokesman says. “We hope the judges will give him the opportunity to continue to run the companies and achieve the goals he has set.”
The prosecution also is seeking a 4-year prison sentence for Hyundai Vice Chairman and co-CEO Kim Dong-jin, the No.2 executive who ran the company during a 2-month period while Chung was in prison.
Additionally, the prosecution wants 3-year jail sentences for two other Hyundai executives, Lee Jung-dae, chief financial officer, and Kim Seung-Nyun, chief of procurement.
All three senior executives are accused of complicity in relation to a 130 billion won ($138.4 million) slush fund prosecutors allege Chung created from money skimmed from Hyundai-affiliated companies.
Chung was arrested April 28 but released two months later after claiming ill health and posting a 1 billion won ($1 million) bail.
Hyundai’s unionized workers today were expected to rally outside the Seoul southern district court where the prosecution made its sentencing requests.
The union staged a walkout at Hyundai’s South Korean plants Jan. 15 and is preparing further work stoppages Jan. 17 to protest the amount of workers’ year-end bonuses.