We kick things off at the second criminal trial hearing of Choi Soon-sil, a longtime confidante of impeached President Park Geun-hye and woman at the center of a massive power abuse scandal rattling the entire country.
Our Kim Hye-sung is live at the Seoul Central District Court where the hearing is has been ongoing for hours now.
Hyesung, we're learning the prosecutors had a pool of evidence against Choi today?
Good evening, Connyoung.
Both Choi Soon-sil and former presidential aide An Chong-bum appeared in court at around ten this morning, and the hearing has been ongoing for nearly ten hours now.
Prosecutors have submitted more documents today - remember they had already submitted a quarter of their 27-thousand pages of evidence at the first hearing last week.( )
Choi has known President Park for four decades and is accused of colluding with Park to pressure big businesses, including Samsung Group, to contribute to non-profit foundations backing the president's initiatives.
But Choi's lawyers denied all charges against her including abuse of power, attempted fraud, and bribery.
Prosecutors also tried to release another crucial piece of evidence -- An's work-related notebook -- which details the president's directives regarding the donations to Mir and K-sports, but he refused, saying that it should not be admissible because it was illegally obtained during the investigation.
The prosecution, however, concluded that both Choi and An are trying to prevent the court from using evidence that could be damaging to President Park.
Are there other new pieces of evidence put forward by the prosecution?
New information including a transcript of a phone conversation between An Chong-bum and the director of K-Sports Foundation last October, which prosecutors say indicate An and Choi's involvement in running K-Sports and Mir foundation.
Another new piece of evidence is a testimony by a Samsung executive, which says that the corporation did donate money to Mir and K-Sports after contact from the presidential office of Cheong Wa Dae for fear of the possible disadvantages of not complying..
So Connyoung, it's been hours of fight or war of evidence between the prosecutors and the suspects here at the criminal court and judges will determine whether the evidences can be accepted.
Back to you, Connyoung.
Our Kim Hyesung live from the Seoul Central District Court well done, Hyesung.