The Defense Ministry confirmed that Kim and two fellow soldiers left their base in Ilsan, Gyeonggi Province, without permission to visit a Thai massage parlor in June. The massage parlor does not provide any kind of salacious services, according to the ministry.
Kim had originally told the military team coaches that he was going to the grocery store for beverages.
|Figure skating queen Kim Yu-na (left) and hockey player Kim Won-joong. (OSEN)|
On the way back from the massage parlor, the three soldiers were involved in a car accident with a drunk driver. Kim, who was sitting in the front passenger seat, ruptured his cruciate ligament and was told by a local hospital it would take six weeks to recover. The other two soldiers had only minor abrasions.
The Defense Ministry said it launched an investigation after it received an anonymous tip about Kim’s unauthorized absence. The military plans to oust Kim from the military hockey team and relocate him to a regular military base. Kim is currently being treated in the military hospital.
Five military authorities, including Kim’s coaches and supervisors, were also punished for his absence without leave.
By Chung Joo-won (firstname.lastname@example.org)