“A” was originally indicted in 2016 for what occurred back in March 2014. “A” first tried to force himself on “B,” who was a trainee at the time, after they wrapped up filming for a music video and had a few drinks. They were in his car’s backseat while a designated driver drove them, when he first forcibly assaulted her, and he indecently touched her once more after they got out of the car later, saying, “I want to check whether you have had plastic surgery on your chest.” According to the prosecution, “A” sexually assaulted “B” again in a karaoke room later the same year, in August 2014.
Initially, however, the agency CEO was found not guilty of sexual assault because the trainee continued to attend events and signed a contract.
During the first trial which took place in October 2016, the court originally found that the trainee’s testimony regarding the sexual assault was not credible enough, stating that “B” continued to perform at various events and signed an exclusive contract with the agency “A” is CEO of in April 2014. Therefore, the court ruled that “A” was innocent of sexually assaulting the trainee, which was appealed immediately.
Again, judging an alleged trauma victim by his or her actions afterward is foolish. That’s especially true in this case, where common sense would tell you that the power dynamic between the CEO and trainee could easily explain the actions taken.
Thankfully, the appellate court had some sense about it.
They called attention to the fact that “B” was older than the typical trainee (32 years of age by Korean reckoning), and that there was a higher risk of scrutiny from younger trainees. They stated that it’s understandable she didn’t speak out right away even after she debuted since it could negatively influence her career. In addition, during the appeals trial, CEO “A” was inconsistent about who was driving, claiming it was him at first during the first sexual assault incident. He was also found to have reportedly said before the assault, “Trainees and agency CEOs have to sleep with each other.”
Sadly, the surprising thing is not that this happened or that he initially got off with that reasoning, but rather that eventually the courts seemed to get it right in the end.