[THE INVESTOR] Seo Mi-kyung, the common-law wife of Lotte Group founder Shin Kyuk-ho, owns real estate worth over 100 billion won (US$88.97 million), according to a local conglomerate tracker on Aug. 30.
Chaebul.com said that Seo owns five pieces of real estate, which were worth a total of 117.7 billion won, based on the appraisal by the Land Ministry this year.
Seo is the 1977 winner of the group's Miss Lotte beauty pageant and has a 33-year-old daughter with Shin. The two have a common-law marriage under South Korean law.
Seo faces a prosecution summons over suspicions that Shin dodged taxes in the process of donating a 6.2-percent stake in Lotte Holdings -- held under borrowed names -- to Seo, her daughter and Shin Young-ja, one of the founder's daughters, in 2006. Lotte Holdings is Lotte’s de facto holding firm based in Tokyo.
The prosecution has been investigating Lotte Group, run by Shin Kyuk-ho's son Dong-bin, since early June over alleged slush funds, embezzlement and other irregularities.
By Kim Ji-hyun (firstname.lastname@example.org)