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Former South Korean president Park Geun-hye convicted, jailed for 24 years

By Shubham

Former president of South Korea Park Geun-Hye was sentenced to 24 years in jail on Friday, April 6, for abusing power and coercion.

Former president of South Korea Park Geun-hye

The conviction was shown live - an unprecedented move in the country's history.

Park, 66, became a focal point of discussion after the scandal during her tenure between 2013-17 rocked the East Asian nation.

Park was also handed a fine of 18 billion won ($17 million).

The leader was, however, conspicuous by her absence at the court since she boycotted the trial accusing to be biased against her. She denied the charges against her and said she would appeal against the verdict.

Park, the 11th and the first woman president of South Korea and also East Asia, is the daughter of Park Chung-hee, the third president of the country who ruled between 1963 and 1979.

The court, which said Park had little "sign of repentance" over the verdict, held that she had worked with her childhood and close friend Choi Soon-sil to force electronics giant like Samsung and retail chain Lotte to give millions of dollars to the latter's foundations.

The former president was also found guilty of making companies sign lucrative deals with Choi's firms and donated gifts to her family. She was also convicted of leaking confidential presidential documents to her friend.

South Korea's presidential residence Blue House reacted to the ruling saying it was a "heartbreaking event" for the country.

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