Prosecutors launched a second round of raids on affiliates of South Korea’s retail giant Lotte Group on Tuesday as their probe into the country’s fifth-largest conglomerate widens over the group’s alleged slush funds.
The Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office said it raided a total of 15 places, including 10 of Lotte’s affiliates. Lotte Engineering & Construction Co. and Lotte Chemical Co. were included on the raid list.
Prosecutors said they confiscated accounting books as well as documents on land transactions and deals between the affiliates.
The second raids came a few days after prosecutors raided the headquarters of the group and six of its affiliates, including Hotel Lotte Co., with some hundreds of investigative officials on Friday.
Prosecutors suspect the group created slush funds while making transactions between its affiliates.
The investigation may widen to include suspicions that Lotte lobbied government officials from the previous administration to get approval for the construction of the nation’s tallest building near a military airport, observers said.