South Korean prosecutors question Lotte Group Chairman Shin Dong-bin, the most senior executive to face interrogation as part of a sweeping criminal probe into the country's fifth-largest conglomerate. David Pollard reports.
A moment of truth for Shin Dong-bin. No doubt counting the cost of the last four months ... A failed 4.5 billion dollar IPO in June, the apparent suicide of his top lieutenant in August ... And now the Lotte Group chairman here at the Seoul prosecutor's office - for questioning. As part of a probe into suspected embezzlement at South Korea's fifth-largest conglomerate. First though - time for an apology. (SOUNDBITE) (Korean) CHAIRMAN AND SECOND SON OF LOTTE GROUP, SHIN DONG-BIN, SAYING: "I am sorry for causing concerns. I will sincerely cooperate with the prosecutors' investigation." As chairman, Shin is in control of 92 billion dollars in assets - and a group already riven by a family succession feud even before the probe. He is also the most senior Lotte executive to face interrogation. His vice-chairman Lee In-won was found hanged under a tree just hours before he was due to be questioned late last month. Earlier this month, prosecutors also questioned Shin Kyuk-ho - Lotte Group's 93-year-old founder. - and his elder brother Shin Dong-joo.