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Technology

Pardon likely for Samsung chief as company faces chip challenge

South Korean president seen clearing deck for 'commander' Lee Jae-yong

U.S. President Joe Biden, South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol and Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong visit a Samsung factory in Pyeongtaek, South Korea, in May.     © Reuters

SEOUL -- Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong could, in the coming days, become the latest South Korean corporate titan to receive a presidential pardon, potentially freeing him to succeed his late father as head of the tech titan and deal with challenges facing the company, including the global semiconductor crunch.

President Yoon Suk-yeol may make the move ahead of South Korea's annual Liberation Day celebration on Aug. 15, when amnesties are traditionally granted. On Tuesday, the Justice Ministry began a meeting to consider pardons, Yonhap News Agency reported. After the deliberations, the justice minister will compile a list of people for Yoon to approve and be confirmed by his cabinet.

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