A French court on Wednesday rejected a bail request by the eldest daughter of Yoo Byung-eon, the de facto owner of Chonghaejin Marine, who was arrested in Paris on Tuesday. The decision came after the court reviewed the legality of her detention.
The court will now review the extradition of Yoo Sum-na (48) at the request of the Korean government while she remains in detention for up to 40 days.
A Korean lawyer in Paris said, "Considering the usual legal process in France, the case has been handed over to the court relatively quickly."
But Yoo Sum-na has hired a high-profile lawyer to fight the extradition. Patrick Maisonneuve has defended a PR agency that was linked to an election funding scandal involving former French President Nicolas Sarkozy and Omar Bongo, the former leader of Gabon. In 2009, Maisonneuve also defended the Church of Scientology on charges of profiting illegally.
Yoo Sum-na was alone when she was arrested by French police. She disappeared from her Paris apartment for a while when prosecutors in Korea began a massive investigation of her family last month but was nabbed during an early-morning raid.
The apartment on rue de Cerisoles near the Arc de Triomphe is just a five-minute walk from the French subsidiary of her father's company. The posh neighborhood is full of luxury boutiques and hotels, and apartments there command the highest prices in Paris.
Yoo's apartment is on the second floor of a six-story building. It has two bedrooms and monthly rent is around 7,000 euros.
Her arrest has focused attention on the whereabouts of her husband, who owns a 15-percent stake in a publishing company owned by the Yoo family.
He became CEO of the publishing company only last month, taking over from Yoo Byung-eon's second son, Hyuk-ki, and apparently returned to Korea from France to deal with the ongoing investigation, but it is unclear where he is now.