South Korea court rules Samsung chairman doesn't have to share inheritance with older brother

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SEOUL, South Korea - The chairman of Samsung Electronics has kept his fortune and control of the Samsung conglomerate after a South Korean court Friday ruled against his older brother in an inheritance battle.

The case was watched because a ruling against Samsung's chairman Lee Kun-hee could have resulted in the unraveling of a cross-shareholding structure that allows Lee, who is South Korea's richest person, to control the conglomerate as a minority shareholder

The high-stakes fight also highlighted a deep discord between the two sons of Samsung founder Lee Byung-chull, who denounced each other in public as the battle unfolded last year

Lee Kun-hee's brother, Meng-hee, wanted a bigger share of the Samsung cake but the court ruled that a 10-year period for inheritance claims had expired.

It also said there was not enough evidence to prove that dividends from Samsung companies were intended as part of the inheritance from Byung-chull.

Meng-hee's lawyers said they would consider an appeal.

Before announcing the ruling, the judge said he wished the brothers would reconcile and live in harmony.

Organizations: Samsung Electronics

Geographic location: South Korea, SEOUL

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