A former chief executive at Kangwon Land Inc, the only casino operator in South Korea authorised to let locals gamble, has been sentenced to three years in prison for unfair staff-hiring practices, reports Yonhap News Agency.
Choi Hung-jib, who reportedly led the state-run enterprise between mid-2011 and early 2014, was found guilty of recruiting favoured people to work at the Kangwon Land casino resort (pictured in a file photo) ahead of other job candidates and at the request of politicians.
The news agency said the sentence was issued on Tuesday by the Chuncheon district court in Kangwon province. Mr Choi was remanded in custody following the court ruling.
Among 5,200 people who reportedly applied for jobs at the company between 2012 and 2013, only 518 were successful, and it had been alleged that at least part of the latter cohort owed their good fortune to having ties to powerful people, reported the Korea Times in December 2017.
It was also reported then, that 23 unsuccessful job candidates covering the period from 2012 to 2013 had subsequently filed a damages suit against Kangwon Land, alleging the company used them to make the recruitment processes of the company seem fair when they were not.
In September 2017 the Korea Times reported that alleged wrongdoing at the operating company of Kangwon Land related to events that began six years before, with a public prosecution linked to the matter having taken place in 2015. The Kangwon land property is located in a remote upland area 150 kilometres (93 miles) from the national capital Seoul.
Last July, public broadcaster KBS World Radio reported that prosecutors had indicted two lawmakers from South Korea’s main opposition Liberty Korea Party in connection with the hiring scandal at Kangwon Land.
In mid-March South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in, who was previously parliamentary leader of the Democratic Party, ordered the dismissal of 226 Kangwon Land employees judged – following a probe – to have got their jobs via unfair means, Yonhap reported at the time, citing the presidential office.
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