Mon Jan 2, 2017 05:50AM
Chung Yoo-ra (File photo by Reuters)
Chung Yoo-ra (File photo by Reuters)

A figure linked to the corruption scandal surrounding South Korea’s President Park Geun-hye has been arrested in Denmark.

Chung Yoo-ra was arrested by Danish police on Sunday for overstaying her visa, South Korean media reported on Monday, citing judiciary officials in the Asian country.

Korean prosecutors said they were currently in talks with Danish authorities to have Chung deported to Seoul.

Chung is the daughter of Choi Soon-sil, the woman at the center of the corruption scandal that has led to the impeachment of President Park. The 20-year-old is accused of having received special treatment — financial and educational.

Top Samsung managers are being investigated for indirectly paying for Chung’s equestrian training in Germany in a bid to curry favor with the president. Several professors at Ewha Women’s University, including a former school president, have also been investigated for giving Chung preferential treatment and marks she allegedly did not deserve. One professor has been arrested, too.

Choi Soon-sil (C) (Photo by AFP)

Choi, the mother, who is a close friend of the president, is accused of conspiring with Park and several other government officials to extort tens of millions of dollars from companies like Samsung in “donations” to organizations under Choi’s control.

Choi, who is in prison facing trial, has denied the charges against her. But President Park has indirectly hinted that Choi was involved in wrongdoing by apologizing to the nation for being negligent in her friendship with her.

The president has denied any wrongdoing herself; nonetheless, she has been impeached, stripped of her presidential powers, and is awaiting a Constitutional Court ruling on her impeachment. The Constitutional Court has up to six months to reach that ruling. Prime Minister Hwang Kyo-ahn has taken over as acting president in the meantime.

But none of the allegations against Chung, her mother, and the president has been proven at a court, at least not yet. Park herself cannot be prosecuted for now; she is maintaining her title even as she has been relieved of duty, and the South Korean constitution bans formal charges against a sitting president.