K-pop star jailed for six years for gang rape, spycam crimes
K-pop star Jung Joon-young was convicted of gang rape.
AFP/Jung Yeon-je
K-pop star jailed for six years for gang rape, spycam crimes
(Agence France-Presse) - November 29, 2019 - 3:29pm

SEOUL, South Korea — South Korean K-pop singer-songwriter Jung Joon-young was convicted Friday of gang rape, as well as secretly filming and distributing illicit sex videos of his partners, and jailed for six years.

Jung and Choi Jong-hoon, a former member of boy band FT Island, were found guilty of gang-raping two different victims on two occasions in 2016.

Separately, 30-year-old Jung was also convicted of filming himself having sex with other women without their knowledge and sharing the footage 11 times without their consent.

It is the highest-profile example of an epidemic of spycam crimes in South Korea, which have prompted widespread anger and seen women demonstrating in Seoul, chanting: "My life is not your porn".

Jung distributed his videos in mobile chatrooms with recipients including fellow K-pop star Seungri of BIGBANG, who has been accused of illegal gambling in connection with a sex and drugs scandal.

Jung was jailed for six years and Choi, 29, for five, Yonhap news agency cited the Seoul Central District Court as saying.

"Jung and Choi took part in gang rape of victims who were intoxicated and unable to resist," the verdict said, rejecting the defendants' claim the sex was consensual.

"It is hard to fathom the extent of suffering the victims must have gone through."

The defendants had perceived the victims only as "sexual objects" to be exploited, it added, and "a heavy punishment is inevitable given the gravity of offences".

Both men broke down in tears when the sentences were announced.

Jung rose to fame in 2014 when he came third in the audition show "Super Star K" and had a number of solo hits before the scandal emerged in March, when he announced his retirement.

Known as "molka", spycam videos are largely made by men secretly filming women in schools, toilets and elsewhere, although the term can also be applied to clandestinely-shot footage of consensual sex.

In the conservative South, women who appear in such videos will feel deep shame despite being the victims and face the threat of ostracism and social isolation.

Around 5,500 people were arrested for molka offences last year, 97 percent of them men, according to police data. 

As It Happens
LATEST UPDATE: March 22, 2019 - 10:23am

K-pop star Jung Joon-young has been arrested, hours after he apologized for filming and distributing illicit sex videos, in a scandal that has rocked South Korea's entertainment industry.

The singer-songwriter last week admitted to filming himself having sex and sharing the footage without his partners' consent.

The videos of at least 10 women were shared through mobile chat rooms in 2015 with recipients including fellow K-pop star Seungri of BIGBANG.

The Seoul Central District Court issued the arrest warrant late Thursday, hours after Jung appeared at a hearing and apologized for committing "unforgivable crimes", the South's Yonhap news agency reported. 

"I am sorry. I made a big and inexcusable mistake, and I admit my guilt," he said.

"I will live my days repenting for the sins."

Following the hearing, the 30-year-old was led away in handcuffs and taken to a police station to await the court's decision on the warrant. — Agence France-Presse

March 22, 2019 - 10:23am

YG Entertainment retains Yang Min-suk, brother of Yang Hyun-suk, as CEO, the Korea Herald reports.

YG Entertainment manages the mega kpop boy group BIGBANG, whose youngest member Seungri is embroiled in the sex-for-investment probe in Seoul.

Korean media reports YG Entertainment is under investigation for tax evasion.

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