Former Vice Justice Minister Kim Hak-ui has come under investigation by the prosecution again for allegedly sexually assaulting a woman while working as a senior prosecutor between 2006 and 2008.
Though the prosecution cleared Kim and closed the case, which was initially probed by police, citing lack of evidence, in November 2013, the Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office said Wednesday that the woman recently filed rape charges against the 57-year-old with the investigative agency.
As for the video footage, seized by police last year, that reportedly showed Kim and other influential figures having sex parties with the woman (and possibly several other women), the 37-year-old accuser denied during the previous investigation that she was the figure in the clip.
“But the woman’s denial at the time was due to fear of possible blackmail by the suspects,” her attorney Park Chan-jong told a TV news provider on Thursday.
Park said that his law firm has continued to persuade her to reveal the truth of the allegations, that she was sexually assaulted after a broker, Yoon Jung-cheon, reportedly promised to guarantee the success of her fashion business.
As in the initial case in 2013, Yoon, a former official in the construction sector, was subject to a second round of investigations for offering sex parties to the ex-Vice Justice Minister Kim and five other high-profile officials.
In July 2013, police referred the case to the prosecution, which investigated allegations Kim raped the women; hired Yoon, 53; and used illegal drugs at the parties held at a residence in Wonju, Gangwon Province.
Prosecutors had said that they tracked Kim’s whereabouts at the time of the alleged incidents through mobile phone positioning and found the accusations to be groundless. The prosecution had also said one of the alleged rape victims (the 37-year-old woman) changed her story over the course of the investigation.
Attorney Park, however, alleged that the prosecution had been lax in its scrutiny of the charges.
Park claimed that the woman who filed the complaint with the prosecution and several others were pressured to have irregular, coercive sexual relations with Kim.
Kim stepped down from his post in March 2013 amid his alleged involvement in the sex-for-favors scandal. His resignation came about a week after he was appointed vice justice minister.
He had expressed regret about what he claimed were groundless reports, saying they seriously damaged his honor and family life.
The list of public figures who reportedly received sexual services through the reported broker Yoon includes other high-profile officials, lawmakers and executives in in the media sector.
By Kim Yon-se (firstname.lastname@example.org)