The Samsung family saga continues.
Despite fall outs and ongoing legal action, chairman of the company Lee Kun-hee has thrown down the gauntlet and said he has no intention of compromising with his siblings over inheritance disputes.
Speaking for the first time on the matter yesterday Kun-hee told Korean press camped outside the company's headquarters that if his bitter siblings insisted on proceeding with the lawsuit he would sue back. And he means business claiming he'd go as far as not only the Supreme Court but also the Constitutional Court of Korea.
“I don’t want to give [them] a penny,” he added
The chairman's comments come two months after his elder brother Lee Maeng-hee and the first son of the late Lee Byung-chull, founder of Samsung, demanded in a lawsuit that the he give back $623 million (710 billion won) worth of shares in Samsung Insurance and Samsung Electronics.
And the twists and turns don't end there, with Maeng-hee, the father of current CJ Chairman Lee Jay-hyan also wading in earlier this year following claims that his son was being spied on by Samsung employees.
Founder Lee Byung-chull died in 1987. He had three sons and five daughters and Kun-hee is the seventh child and third son. Sook-hee, the fourth child and second daughter, followed Maeng-hee’s suit, asking for cash, while some third-generation descendants have also joined the legal move.
Although it was believed Samsung would quietly pay the disgruntled relatives, Lee obviously doesn't want to give away any of his fortunes.
He added that the money had been evenly distributed and the relatives were now becoming "greedy because Samsung has grown too big.”
Following the chairman's outlandish remarks, the Samsung PR machine when into overdrive, attempting to soften the blow by claiming that although he mentioned the Constitutional Court, it didn't mean he would go that far.
And the CJ Group also had its bit to say, claiming it was disappointed that "Lee made comments disparaging CJ without apologising for the illegal surveillance of our chief.”