An appeals court on Wednesday upheld a 16-month prison term handed down to a local professor on charges of bribery for manipulating a report in favor of Oxy Reckitt Benckiser in a high-profile toxic humidifier disinfectant case.
The Seoul High Court convicted the professor at Hoseo University in Asan, some 100 kilometers south of Seoul, of writing the report in return for money between October 2011 and September 2012.
|members of civic consumers' groups cross out the images of the products of Oxy Reckitt Benckiser at a news conference calling for the suspension of products' marketing in front of a supermarket in Daejeon, 164 kilometers south of Seoul. (Yonhap)|
The professor, identified only by his last name Yoo, was ordered to forfeit 24 million won ($21,200) he illegally obtained from the household goods maker.
The humidifier disinfectant case, one of the worst scandals ever involving a consumer product using chemicals, came to light after four pregnant women died of lung problems from unknown causes in 2011.
A government-led investigation later confirmed a connection between scores of people who died of lung problems and the chemicals used to clean household humidifiers.
Yoo was also convicted of fraud for illegally pocketing research fees worth some 68 million won from the university by fabricating the payroll. (Yonhap)