From a K-Pop Idol To A Criminal

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From a K-Pop Idol To A Criminal

Idiana Perez, Editor in Chief/student-journalist

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Shocking news has erupted in South Korea with the revelation of several celebrities guilty of distributing and making lewd comments on illicit videos shared on a group chat and individually on Kakaotalk (South Korea’s main messaging platform) of having sex with women and recording them without their knowledge.

The people involved are Seungri former member of the influential all-male group Big Bang, singer-songwriter and TV personality Jung Joon-Young, a former member of F.T. island Choi Jong-hoon, CNblue member Lee Jong-Hyun, a former member of Highlight Yong Jun-Hyung, singer-songwriters Roy Kim and Eddy Kim, Super Junior member Kangin, and 2pm member Jeong Jinwoon.

Roots to the start of this scandal lead to January 28 when the footage was revealed of a man being assaulted by guards at the Burning Sun club which Seungri was an executive director of. Throughout the scandal that is called the Burning Sun Scandal, numerous criminal activities were revealed to have been taking place for years with not only celebrities being involved but many individuals, powerful figures, the police, and more.

Crimes the suspects have committed include prostitution mediation, filming, and circulation of illegally hidden camera footage, drug usage, bribing the police, gambling, and tax evasion some of which have already confirmed to have occurred.

In February news outlet SBS funE reported that they found crucial evidence of Seungri exchanging messages between him and “C”, who later was revealed to be Choi Jong Hoon, Yoo In Suk, and Burning Sun employee “Kim” suggesting that Seungri lobbied to investors and offered sexual favors as bribes.

YG (Seungri’s former agency) and Yuri Holdings (the company of Yoo In Suk) both commented that same day that the reports were not true and that the messages were fabricated. The police decided to launch an investigation regarding the reports.

As the case was being investigated SBS funE revealed on March 4 that the Anti-Corruption and Civil Rights Commission got hold of the original copy of the messages through a lawyer who said that the whistleblower had found evidence of the police being involved in the scandal.

6 days later Seungri got booked on charges of violating the law by being a prostitution mediator.

In March SBS funE found shocking information from the chatroom that Seungri belonged in by reporting that he and two other celebrities shared illegally hidden camera footage within the chatroom. Seungri announced his retirement from the entertainment industry that same day.

Rumors sparked that Jung Joon Young was one of the celebrities who shared illegally hidden camera footage which later turned out to be true.

Jung Joon-Young was removed from Korean TV variety shows he starred in such as  “2 Days & 1 Night,” “Salty Tour,” and “4 Wheeled Restaurant.” Jung Joon Young was booked on charges of spreading illegally hidden camera footage.

Another celebrity involved was Yong Junhyung personally denied he had any involvement along with his agency Around Us Entertainment. However, he was not part of the chat room but individually chatted with Jung one on one and saw the videos and instead of scolding Jung he laughed when he saw the videos.

On March 12 SBS reported that there was more criminal content from the chatroom that Jung Joon Young was part in along with other unnamed celebrities. The unnamed celebrities were Lee Jong Hyun and Choi Jong Hoon.

FNC Entertainment denied the allegations of Lee Jong Hyun and Choi Jong Hoon being involved in the groups chat room but were slapped in the face when Choi Jong Hoon got caught with having had his DUI covered up with the help of a police officer he contacted with from time to time.

Choi Jong Hoon is currently being investigated while Jung was arrested on March 21 and still has more charges being accused against him.

Roy Kim and Eddy Kim, both who are good friends of Jung, were revealed to have been part of the group chat and are currently being investigated on whether they distributed the videos and picture or not.