SEOUL, March 6 (UPI) -- Former South Korean President Lee Myung-bak was released on bail on Wednesday, after spending 349 days in state custody, following his arrest and subsequent conviction over corruption charges.
Lee, a former chief executive of Hyundai Engineering and Construction, was convicted of taking millions of dollars and for embezzling about $31 million from DAS between 1994 and 2006.
DAS is the company that funded a Lee-backed enterprise, and is an auto parts company that South Korean prosecutors have said Lee owns through his relatives.
Lee posted nearly $900,000 bail, Yonhap and other news agencies reported Wednesday. A Seoul high court agreed to release the former president on the condition that he remains within the boundaries of his private residence in southern Seoul, and limits communication with a few people, according to reports.
Any failure to comply on the part of the defendant could result in another arrest, the South Korean court said Wednesday.
Local news service EDaily reported Lee was greeted by a small number of supporters when he arrived at his residence.
Security was heavy near his house; about 140 police officers were dispatched to the area ahead of his return.
Choe Si-jeong, chairman of Korea Communications Commission, said he had been "worried" Lee's health was failing.
The former president may have been suffering from diabetes, Choe said, according to Yonhap.
Lee is a conservative, and his support base includes an older South Korean demographic.
Kim Heung-keun, a private citizen who had showed up near Lee's residence in hopes of catching a glimpse of the man, said he felt sorry Lee had to endure imprisonment.
Lee said in 2018 his conviction was a retaliatory measure.