The SBS investigative reporting department <Panda to the End> team obtained and reported on the details of how Seongnam FC paid hundreds of millions of won to aides of Democratic Party lawmaker Lee Jae-myung in return for the donation.

In response, Rep. Lee said, "We only paid performance compensation in accordance with the regulations."

Related Articles ▶[Exclusive] Part of Seongnam FC's donations, 'performance pay' is paid to close associates

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In November 2014, the bonus rules were made…

Approval from Seongnam Mayor Lee Jae-myung

In November 2014, Seongnam FC prepared a report called 'Tax Income Increase Operation Plan'.

After internal approval of Seongnam FC, the mayor of Seongnam at the time, Jae-myung Lee, the owner of the club, signed it as the final approver.

The signatures of Seongnam city officials, such as Jeong Jin-sang, who seems to have reviewed the contents together with the memo "Reflecting internal changes, Lee Jae-myung" are also left.

According to the report document, the reason for creating the bonus rules is that the club's own marketing performance was poor, and it was expected that it would be difficult to expand the finances, such as being criticized by the city council.

The existing marketing team has a limit in increasing revenue, so advertising agencies and public officials will also contribute to the club's financial expansion.

Under the policy of encouraging private participation by differentiating the payment ratio, executives and employees are required to pay up to 10% of the advertising fee received, and public officials, advertisers, and general citizens are required to pay up to 20% of the bonus.

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Seongnam FC "No bonus paid before November 2014"

However, there is a part where the contents of the report and the explanation of Seongnam FC do not match.

In the document, it was written that regulations were made to expand the number of recipients of bonus payments, but in fact, there was no incentive payment regulation related to income increase before November 2014, when the above regulations were made.

Seongnam FC said, "The payment of incentives for income-increasing activities was first carried out in 2015, and there are no incentives paid before November 2014."

Whether the payment of bonuses is transparent or not is an area that needs to be confirmed later.

According to Seongnam FC's 'Guidelines for Payment of Performance Bonuses', it was the responsibility of the Performance Payment Review Committee, which consisted of two internal members and three external members, to decide whether and how to pay performance bonuses.

According to the document 'Composition of the Performance Payment Review Committee (draft)' prepared by Seongnam FC, Seongnam City Hall officials, family members close to lawmaker Lee, and lawyers belonging to the law firm where Lee served are listed as external members.

Seongnam City Council Vice-Chairman, Seongnam City Officials, and Local Media Representative Operated Advertising Companies

It is difficult to judge at present whether the incentive system was operated according to its original purpose.

The existing marketing team made a bonus rule saying that there are limitations, but in fact, about 90% of the advertising order bonus paid by Seongnam FC over the past three years was concentrated on three employees from the existing marketing and public relations departments.

They are considered close aides, such as when Lee Jae-myung was governor of Gyeonggi-do and moved to Gyeonggi-do.

In addition to these, advertising agencies operated by local media representatives in Seongnam City, vice-chairmen of the Seongnam City Council at the time, and civil servants at the Seongnam city manager level received incentives, which amounted to only 10% of the total amount.

The details of the donations Seongnam FC attracted from companies from 2015 to 2017 will be covered in detail in a follow-up report.