Actor Jung Woo-sung was talked into an investment fraud by a television scriptwriter, local media reported on Wednesday.
The 46-year-old scriptwriter, surnamed Park, was arrested Wednesday on charges of fraud, after a group of investors filed a lawsuit against the writer, according to the Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office.
The writer is accused of having defrauded 2.3 billion won ($1.96 million) from acquaintances, claiming the money would be invested in a private equity fund used by members of chaebol, or family-run conglomerates.
Actor Jung Woo-sung (Red Brick House Entertainment)
Jung, 42, is reported not to be among the plaintiffs, but is said to have handed over an undisclosed sum to the writer in 2009.
Park is said to have used Jung’s name to further his scam. Jung was recently questioned by the prosecutors.
Jung’s entertainment agency Red Brick House Entertainment told local media that the actor had wanted the case to remain under wraps out of concern for his public image.
“Jung and the TV writer have been friends since 2008,” a source from the agency was quoted as saying on Wednesday. “His sense of disappointment at his friend dwarfs the financial damage. We hope the case will be settled soon.”
Park is said to have worked on numerous popular TV series in the 1990s. He had also launched publishing and fashion businesses. Park allegedly used the money for his own businesses.
Prosecutors were seeking an arrest warrant against Park on Thursday and are investigating whether other celebrities have been duped.
By Son Ji-hyoung (firstname.lastname@example.org