An escalating K-pop sex scandal brought into light as a performer who rose to fame after coming second in one of South Korea’s top talent shows confessed secretly filming himself making love and sharing the footage.
Jung Joon-young, aged 30, proclaimed his immediate retirement from showbusiness amid accusations he shot and shared sexual imagery without his partners’ consent.
“I admit to all my crimes,” he said in a statement released late Tuesday. “I filmed women without their consent and shared it in a chatroom, and while I was doing so, I didn’t feel a great sense of guilt.”
Jung among the three male artists in a group chat where some members collectively gave secretly filmed footage of a sexual nature of at least 10 women, stated local broadcaster SBS.
K-pop singer Seungri, a massively popular member of band BIGBANG announced his retirement from show business on Monday amidst a sex-for-investment criminal investigation, was also a member of the chatroom, the broadcaster added.
K-pop stars commonly promote presentable images—and are enthusiastically endorsed by the South Korean government as a key cultural export—making the scandal even more outrageous.
In 2016, Jung was charged with filming a video with a sexual partner without her consent. Prosecutors fell the case for lack of evidence after she withdrew her allegation.
Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency will question Jung again later this week.
Seungri was interviewed at the weekend over allegations he lobbied potential investors by presenting them the services of prostitutes at nightclubs in Seoul’s posh Gangnam district.
The 29-year-old is also connected to a police investigation into Burning Sun, a nightclub where he was a public relations director. Staff are suspected to use hidden cameras to film women and used alcohol and drugs to sexually mug them.
South Korea has been fighting a growing epidemic of so-called “molka”—hidden cameras which largely contain men secretly recording women and sharing the unlawful content to others.
“This case just shows that male K-pop stars are no exception when it comes to being part of this very disturbing reality that exploits women,” women’s rights activist Bae Bok-ju stated.