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Former KDB chief sentenced to 5 years in prison by South Korean top court

The South Korean Supreme Court upheld a lower court ruling that Kang Man-soo, former finance minister and head of Korea Development Bank, will serve five years and two months in prison for abusing his power while in office, Yonhap News Agency reported May 11.

The top court also affirmed that Kang has to pay a fine of 50 million won and forfeit 88 million won, the report said.

Kang, who had close ties to then-President Lee Myung-bak, was accused of abusing his power when he exerted influence over the disbursement of 6.6 billion won of state subsidies to a friend's biotechnology company in 2009. He was also accused of using his power to force the CEO of Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co, of which KDB is a major stakeholder, to invest in the same biotechnology firm in 2011 and 2012.

Kang's sentence was originally four years in prison as per the ruling of the lowest court in May 2017, but was increased to five years and two months during the appeal after he was also found guilty of forcing two brokerages to give donations, the report said.

As of May 10, US$1 was equivalent to 1,066.18 South Korean won.