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Korean Air family members get suspended jail terms for smuggling

The widow and eldest daughter of the late Korean Air Chairman Cho Yang-ho on Thursday received suspended prison terms for smuggling luxury goods into South Korea through company planes.

The Incheon District Court sentenced Cho Hyun-ah, 45, the former Korean Air vice president, to eight months in prison suspended for two years. She must pay a fine of 4.8 million won ($4,060) and forfeit 63 million won.

The late chairman’s wife, Lee Myung-hee, 70, was handed a six-month jail term suspended for one year, with a fine of 700,000 won and forfeiture of 37 million won.

Cho Hyun-ah and Korean Air employees were accused of having smuggled goods worth about 88 million won on 202 occasions between January 2012 and May last year.

Lee was also accused of having smuggled some 37 million won in goods on 46 occasions via the airline’s planes between May 2013 and March last year. She was also charged with falsely declaring 35 million won worth of furniture, which she bought in 2014, as being imported by Korean Air.