Following the initial expose of Lee Seung Gi effectively being defrauded by his company Hook Entertainment and its CEO Kwon Jin Young, Dispatch recently released even further details about the case, revealing how the CEO was living a life of excess on the company’s card while ordering managers to penny pinch for Lee Seung Gi.
The report has a lot of detail but essentially shows Kwon Jin Young vacationing, buying luxury goods, eating fancy diners, and more on the company’s dime.
From 2016 to 2022, Kwon Jin Young spent ~$2 million on the company credit card and was also paid ~$2 million in salary by the company. But her company spending didn’t stop there, as she reportedly hired a younger sibling as a fake employee and paid them ~$300k in salary and then $50k in severance to avoid suspicion when Chorokbaem Media took over Hook, gave her mother a ~$4k per month credit card on which she spent ~$80k, and even gave an employee of the Louis Vuitton shop she loved a ~$8k month credit card and that employee has since quit to reportedly live her life on the card while racking up ~$80k in charges.
On April 2, 2021, Kwon Jin Young told Lee Seung Gi’s manager that he couldn’t spend more money because too much money was being spent on Lee Seung Gi and his team. Yet “A” is allowed to spend ₩660,000 KRW (about $498 USD) of the company’s money on a hospital visit, ₩1.50 million KRW (about $1,130 USD) at Olive Young, a Korean cosmetics store, and ₩100,000 KRW (about $75.40 USD) at an animal hospital.
The ‘A’ mentioned is the Louis Vuitton employee. It’s also reported that the Hook Entertainment director used it for personal matters as well.
Furthermore, she bought “cyber money”, which is either crypto (of course) or virtual game money, and gold — as Dispatch mention, that could be be embezzlement if she kept it or bribery if it was for others.
Kwon Jin Young’s company card expenditure breakdown
Luxury Goods: ₩1.84 billion KRW (about $1.39 million USD)
Airfare: ₩137 million KRW (about $104,000 USD)
Hotel/Lodging: ₩203 million KRW (about $153,000 USD)
Food: ₩173 million KRW (about $130,000 USD)
Hospital: ₩42.3 million KRW (about $31,900 USD)
Shopping: ₩42.9 million KRW (about $32,300 USD)
Internet Shopping: ₩27.9 million KRW (about $21,000 USD)
Beauty/Salon: ₩20.6 million KRW (about $15,600 USD)
Hangame: ₩2.48 million KRW (about $1,870 USD)
Gold: ₩8.93 million KRW (about $6,740 USD)
Donations: ₩3.06 million KRW (about $2,310 USD)
Total: ₩2.82 billion KRW (about $2.13 million USD)
All of that is contrasted against the limits imposed on Lee Seung Gi, whose credit card limit was ~$1500 a month, and the report goes on to show texts exchanges between her and his manager imploring him to get Lee Seung Gi to pay for his own things like food.
Those limits for him apparently also had something to do with his contract structure.
The key point in this comparison is Lee Seung Gi’s contract. The contract that was signed agreed that Lee Seung Gi would receive 70% of the profits and Hook Entertainment would receive 30%, on the condition that Hook Entertainment pays for Lee Seung Gi’s expenses. If Hook Entertainment could get Lee Seung Gi to pay for his own expenses while he was “not working” or his “personal expenses”, the company would then save money.
Given the amount of money he was making the company, it’s honestly an insane amount of greed to penny pinch over buying him food while on schedule.
Unsurprisingly, there’s also accounts in there of her treating the staff more like servants, but there’s audio of her verbally abusing employees already so that’s completely unsurprising.
Well, that reveal sparked a statement from Kwon Jin Young, who said she’ll take full responsibility for Lee Seung Gi’s case with her own personal property.
I have been working as a manager for 25 years. A lot has happened, but it seems like this is the first time I have experienced something as tough and difficult as this.
I believe that any quarrel or misunderstanding should be followed by responsibility at the beginning and end. I do not want to cause any harm to Hook Entertainment, the company I have established with all my 25 years, as well as to the celebrities. Once again, I bow my head and express my apologies.
In addition, I will take full responsibility for the dispute with Lee Seung Gi, and I will not shirk my responsibility and dispose of my personal property to carry out my responsibility.
I am sorry to all the staff at Hook Entertainment, who must have been living in hell every day due to the sudden incident, and to everyone who learned about this unwanted news.
I mean, there’s no problem with continuing to wait for their complete reply and all that, but it’s never a great look when you’re continually releasing responses to more and more damning evidence and those statements get more apologetic and concessionary with every one. Sure went from “wait for the facts” to “I’ll sell all my shit I bought with your money” real quick.
The only thing I worry about is whether Hook’s rep and power in the industry will mess with Lee Seung Gi somehow or if they’re going to be able to dodge serious consequences for all this. We’ll see.