‘PD101’ scandal leads to 8 indictments, prosecutors say all seasons manipulated

The ‘Produce 101’ vote manipulation scandal has led to eight indictments, led by producing director Ahn Joon Young and chief producer Kim Yong Bum being charged with fraud.

The Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office stated on December 3 that producing director Ahn Joon Young and chief producer Kim Yong Bum have been indicted with physical detention for suspicions of obstruction of business and fraud. A show producer known as “A” and five others including entertainment agency staff members have been indicted without physical detention for suspicions such as breach of trust through bribery and violations of the Improper Solicitation and Graft Act.

Ahn Joon Young is also under suspicion of breach of trust through taking bribes. It was previously reported that in January 2018, he began receiving favors at drinking establishments that were allegedly paid for by an entertainment agency. According to the report, escorts were present, and police have stated that over 100 million won (approximately $86,355) was spent for these drinking entertainment services.

While Ahn Joon Young initially claimed vote manipulation happened on the last two seasons, he eventually flipped on the first two seasons as well, something prosecutors now say they have confirmed.

According to the prosecution, they are under suspicion of manipulating the results of the paid votes received from viewers during the live broadcasts of all four seasons of “Produce 101” in favor of certain contestants.

The producing director reportedly previously admitted to manipulating the rankings of “Produce 48” and “Produce X 101” and partially admitted to manipulating the first two seasons of the show. The prosecution has now stated that they’ve confirmed that the viewer votes for all seasons of “Produce 101” were manipulated.

Right, as people have been pointing out recently, it’s a thing because it’s fraud and it involves money.

As far as all seasons of the show being manipulated, I think most had already assumed that, but given that it’s now being said by officials, that likely makes things harder for the groups (past and present) to continue on.


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