The court ruled that Park colluded with her old friend, Choi Soon-sil, to receive tens of billions of won from entities such as Samsung and Lotte. She was also ordered to pay 18 billion won. "Her fines were calculated based on the laws she has violated".
The Seoul Central District Court ruled Park guilty of bribery, extortion, abuse of power and other charges.
According to The Korean Times, companies involved in the scandal included Hyundai Motor, Samsung, Lotte Group, telecom company KT and steelmaker POSCO.
A South Korean judge said Friday that ex-President Park Geun-hye is guilty of abuse of power and coercion.
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The trigger was a snowballing graft scandal involving Park and Choi and accusations of graft, influence-peddling and taking bribes from corporate bigwigs in exchange for policy favours.
The leader was, however, conspicuous by her absence at the court since she boycotted the trial accusing to be biased against her. She was found guilty of abuse of power, coercion, fraud and bribery.
He was sentenced to jail, but only served five months before he was freed, when an appeals court reduced and suspended his sentence.
Former leaders Chun and Roh received presidential pardons after each spent around two years in jail - a privilege that may elude Park for many years, said Jeong Han-wool, an analyst at think tank Hankook Research. The court said she leaked at least 14 state secrets to Choi. That feeling has only grown with the arrest of Park's predecessor on unrelated corruption charges. "She neglected her constitutional responsibilities and shared her power with a private citizen". "Yet she has not showed much sign of remorse and kept blaming Choi and her aides", Kim said.
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"Release (President Park) immediately!" the marchers chanted as they walked between thick lines of police officers.
In a first for South Korea, the sentencing was broadcast live on television - a sign of the intense public interest in the case. "However, considering that the entire population of South Korea is affected by her crime, this seemingly heavy sentence is actually reasonable". She cited sickness as the reason for not appearing for the verdict.
South Korea's first female President, who took office in early 2013, became the nation's first elected head of state to be ousted and now the third former leader to be convicted of corruption.
Along with the prison sentence, Park was also fined 18 billion won ($16.8 million), Kim said. The sentence was more lenient than the 30 years sought by prosecutors.
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The sentence will be a bitter blow for Park, who returned to the presidential palace in 2012 as the country's first woman leader, more than three decades after she left it following the assassination of her father.