President Yoon Suk-yeol has lifted a work ban on Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-Yongincluding him in his first round of presidential pardons with the president saying he was focused on reviving the economy
"The global economy has been hit hard and uncertainties are increasing. The utmost priority is people's livelihoods, and that needs the government's help, but also the economy has to be booming for people to find some breathing room."
Lee, who served two and a half years in prison for bribing former President Park Geun-hye, had been banned from engaging in Samsung-related business activities, with another five years remaining on that restriction.
Other South Korean business tycoons were also pardoned including the head of Lotte Group, Shin Dong-bin.
Former President Lee Myung-bak, who's serving a 17-year sentence for corruption, was not included on the list, despite previous favorable comments from Yoon.
The pardons come ahead of South Korea's Liberation Day on August 15th.
The president gives out special pardons prior to certain national holidays.