As the investigation into multiple allegations of Seungri violating anti-prostitution laws continues, the instance that started this at the Arena club has come back into focus after a woman that Seungri talked about has said that she is not a prostitute.
According to the police, Woman A was a woman who was present at Club Arena in Gangnam on December 7, 2015 when Seungri’s foreign investors were visiting Korea. She was a woman who Seungri introduced to the foreign investors. “In December 2015, Seungri’s acquaintance, Kim, introduced me to a person who was supposed to be the daughter of a foreign sports team owner and we drank together. I am not a prostitute.”
Granted, since prostitution is illegal in Korea, it would be a risk for her to admit even if it was true. So she could be lying or it could’ve involved different women anyway, but I do think this is a solid reality check about the supposed legal slam dunk that many are acting this case is.
Because while the chats themselves haven’t been in doubt for a while now, this brings to the forefront the question of whether the authorities can prove what was being discussed happened and if it was prostitution to begin with.
I … lack faith in them.
In that vein, after a frustrated tweet by one of the translators covering this scandal and the subsequent replies to them from stans, it seems like a good time to address a question/assumption people on both sides seem to ask, which is basically: Is there any way Seungri can get out of this mess without going to jail?
The answer to which is: Yeah, absolutely. Legality and morality have always been different things, after all.
Legally, there’s a long way to go for authorities to convict him of anything, and they’re still in the investigations stage at the moment. Since he thus far hasn’t been shown to have shared hidden camera videos or pictures himself, it’s gonna be hard to charge him for being a bystander/commenter in the group chats. Since authorities don’t yet have a paper trail for the prostitution/trafficking, no matter how many chats they have, it’s difficult to prove in court that he did what is plain to see him admit. The same goes for any drug dealing or sexual assault that happened in one of his clubs, in addition to any police corruption or tax evasion charges.
Like I’ve been saying, this is just the start of things, and in order to actually convict him police need to do their job well. In fact, especially in light of all the alleged police corruption, I have consistently said I expect all of them to dodge more serious charges because I have no faith in this to be executed correctly. That hasn’t changed.
Morally? Well that’s a whole other thing, right? About a half dozen different news sources and a half dozen people directly involved in the chats have already confirmed the group chats themselves were real and it’s not a point of contention anymore. The same chats launched the aforementioned investigation and public outrage due to the hidden camera videos and photos that they themselves said depicted rape/sexual assault, showcased their blatant misogyny, referenced exchanging prostitutes for favors, discussed their own criminality, and referenced connections to police corruption. That doesn’t even include what this started with, which was an assault by staff in a club that Seungri owned, promoted, and was the figurehead of — where still unchallenged group texts show promoters discussing how to deliver drugged and/or inebriated women to VIPs of the club for sex — and whatever responsibility you think he has for that.
So at this point, the only way to defend him morally is to believe that all of the news sources and all of the people who have already admitted to involvement are fabricating this and lying about it. Or for some reason the informant, lawyer, and reporter who broke this story had correct and legitimate information on the others, but specifically decided to frame Seungri by attaching him to all this for whatever reason. That’s basically where it stands on that front, and if you believe that, then go ahead.
In the end, if Seungri is not convicted on serious charges (or anything), I assume the fans will be fans and act like nothing ever happened and he was the victim of a witch hunt, much like Kim Hyun Joong fans do now. As I’ve said, I think whether any of them will be convicted on the worst stuff is up in the air, especially with all these allegations of police corruption swirling about. Personally, I actually think he’s more likely to get nailed on money stuff like tax evasion, because people who get investigated always get caught on that since a paper trail is easier to come by.
Basically then, the reason I currently think Seungri is shitty is not because I’m assuming a conviction is coming, but rather I just find it impossible to logically believe at this point that he’s morally in the clear even if legally they can’t jail him.