2019 has been a fairly daunting year for K-Pop stars. If you’re not familiar with the genre, K-Pop is an extremely popular music emanating from South Korea.
While its origins can be traced back to the early 90s, the term itself was popularized in the 2000s, replacing the term Gayo, which also refers to domestic pop music in South Korea.
Recent months have seen the K-Pop world rocked by scandals and untimely deaths. Just Sunday, Reel 360 reported on K-Pop musician and actress Goo Hara who was found dead at her home in Seoul.
Before her death, she reportedly suffered from cyberbullying after she engaged in a public dispute with her former boyfriend, who she said threatened to disclose a sex video of her.
Now the Associated Press is reporting that a South Korean court found two K-Pop male stars – Jung Joon-young and Choi Jong-hoon – have been found guilty of having sex with a woman without her consent.
The court said in a statement that the two stars were convicted of committing “special quasi-raping.” This means multiple people collaborated to have illicit sexual intercourse with a person who was unconscious or unable to resist.
Jung, 30, received a six-year prison term and former boy band member Choi, a five-year term. Jung was additionally convicted of making sex videos of women against their will and sharing them with friends in a group chat.
The two men were also ordered to undergo 80 hours of sex offender treatment programs.
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Judge Kang Seong-soo said that Jung, 30, had raped women who were “drunk and unable to resist, filmed them nude and having sex, then spread it on a group chat.” This according to the BBC.
“We can’t imagine the pain the victims might have felt who found out later,” he added. He also said it seemed Jung viewed the victims just as a tool for pleasure.
In the final testimony, Jung – who rose to fame on a TV talent show – said: “I deeply regret my foolishness and I feel great remorse.”
“From now on, I shall only… live in remorse,” he added.
In March, he quit the music business after admitting that he secretly filmed women and shared the videos.
On Choi – a former member of the band F.T. Island, which had number one albums in South Korea – the court said the 30-year-old “did not feel remorse after mass-raping drunken victims.”
They have one week to appeal, according to the court.
South Korean pop songs, TV dramas and films are hugely popular in Asia and beyond, but the country’s entertainment world has in recent years suffered a series of sexual scandals that revealed its dark side.
Male stars have faced allegations of sexual assault and abuse, and females in the entertainer business say they’ve been forced to provide sexual services to men in power.
Last month, another K-pop star, Sulli, was discovered dead at her home. She had spoken against the online backlash she received over her lifestyle.