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Wife accused of spousal rape found not guilty

The first woman in Korea to stand trial on charges of raping her husband was found to be not guilty Friday by the Seoul Central District Court.

Prosecutors had sought seven years in prison for the 41-year-old woman surnamed Shim.

In the first day of trial Friday, the court determined it was “difficult to accept that the defendant had forcefully performed intercourse against the will of the plaintiff.”


The court, based on evidence presented, concluded that while the husband had not entirely been willing, the couple’s conversation preceding the intercourse could have sufficiently led Shim to believe she was having consensual sex. Though officially married, the couple had separated and were seeking divorce.

The court also said that despite him having been bound, the plaintiff could move the lower half his arm and could have resisted had he so desired.

While Shim’s rape charge was nullified, she was found guilty of tying up the plaintiff and confining him for 29 hours in a studio flat in Jongno, Seoul, in May 2015. At the time, she coerced him to give statements on record in her favor, should she need them for their impending divorce suit.

Shim was given a probationary sentence with no actual jail time likely to be served, while Shim’s male friend, a 42-year-old surnamed Kim who had helped in binding the plaintiff, was also given a probationary term.

By Lim Jeong-yeo (
catch table
Korea Herald daum