South Korea’s leisure trade was upended this week after a celeb’s mobile phone, which was in for repairs, revealed widespread alleged acts of sexual misconduct. YG Leisure, which is tied carefully to the celebrities on the middle of the scandal, has seen its inventory fluctuate this week as high-profile Okay-pop singers tied to it have been implicated within the criminal activity.
It’s a blemish on South Korea’s main cultural export that’s spawned the creation of a Seoul Metropolitan Police unit to look into the matter.
On the middle of the scandal are ex-Large Bang member Seungri (actual identify Lee Seung-hyun), Jung Joon-young, and FT Island’s Choi Jong-hoon.
Whereas Seungri hasn’t admitted to any particular acts of wrongdoing, Jung has.
On Wednesday, Jung admitted to filming girls he had intercourse with after which sharing the movies on-line. He stated this was achieved with out the data or consent of his companions.
“I admit to all of my sins. I filmed girls with out their consent, shared the movies in a SNS [social networking service] group chat and did such habits with out feeling any sense of guilt,” Jung stated in an announcement.
He added, “Most of all, I kneel all the way down to apologize to the ladies who seem within the movies and all those that is likely to be disenchanted and upset at this surprising incident.”
Seungri apologized to his followers by way of his Instagram account, however has but to elaborate on his position within the scandal.
“I’ve disenchanted so many individuals and made so many individuals indignant, I wish to apologize as soon as extra and I’ll cooperate with the investigation,” he stated.
Amongst Okay-pop leisure labels, YG Leisure, which signed Seungri, was hit hardest by the scandal. The agency’s inventory value slid 14 % on Monday, however has regained some floor since.
JYP Leisure and S.M. Leisure, additionally Okay-pop powerhouses, noticed their shares dip earlier within the week because the scandal’s scope grew, earlier than the market reversed that pattern.
Choi’s company, FNC Leisure, introduced the singer would cease performing with FT Island and place his profession on maintain.
Some 126 officers are actually a part of the legal investigation that features members from the narcotics unit, critical crime squad, a regional investigation unit, and a cyber investigation staff.
Alleged legal exercise
For ex-Large Bang member Seungri, questions over his involvement in alleged criminal activity date again to January, when authorities started investigating claims that the Gangnam membership Burning Solar had drugged feminine patrons, who later stated they have been raped within the membership’s VIP room. Seungri additionally stands accused of offering prostitutes for rich traders.
At one level on South Korean tv, Seungri claimed to be the proprietor of the Burning Solar, however as authorities started their investigation into the allegations the membership offered gamma-hydroxybutyrate, a date rape drug to the feminine friends, it was revealed that the connection had been severed.
Nevertheless, Seungri has admitted he bribed policemen in Gangnam with about $18,00zero to assist facilitate the doorway of underaged friends into the nightclub.
Along with admitting to utilizing date rape medication previously, Jung Joon-young stated he uploaded video footage he took to a personal chatroom on a number of events. Jung stated the ladies within the movies have been filmed with out their consent and even included some celebrities.
A minimum of 10 victims have been recognized by authorities at the moment.
It’s not the primary time Jung has been concerned in a case involving nude photos. In 2016, he was alleged to have recorded nude movies of his then-girlfriend. Nevertheless, the case was dropped after a personal digital forensics firm contracted to retrieve the possibly illicit materials stated that nothing could possibly be obtained from his cellular system.
Suspicions have now arisen that some members of the police requested the know-how agency to ensure no knowledge could possibly be recovered in Jung’s case. Native media reported Thursday that the unnamed forensics agency was raided Wednesday in connection to the present scandal.
Different group chat messages allege Choi Jong-hoon and others mentioned fee being made to the police to cowl up his drunk driving accident in 2016.
Police Commissioner Min Hole-ryong has launched an inner investigation into potential cover-ups and police wrongdoing.
South Korea stays fixated on the scandal and the plethora of allegations that proceed to emerge, however Choi Ji-eun, a former journalist and commentator on South Korean popular culture, stated it’s too early to foretell the scandal’s influence on the notion of nation’s music trade.
“This can be a legal case of grownup males, treating girls as items and sexual objects, however it’s a bit early to foretell the way forward for Okay-pop,” stated Choi Ji-eun.
Choi calls the issue “deep-rooted” and asserts it won’t be simple to vary the tradition. But when these charged have been to be discovered responsible and severely punished after they illegally movie and share the footage; use date rape medication, and commit sexual harassment, “it is going to break down the robust construction [of a male-dominated society] and cruel circle.”
South Korea’s Ministry of Tradition, Sports activities and Tourism, in addition to the Ministry of Gender Equality and Household, declined VOA’s request for remark.
Lee Ju-hyun contributed to this report.