In a shocking turn of events, Dispatch released a report Thursday that claimed the singer’s ex-boyfriend surnamed Choi had threatened to release video footage of the two engaging in sexual intercourse.
The case had initially centered on assault allegations involving Goo and her ex. Police were reportedly considering charges of bodily harm against Goo on Wednesday. Meanwhile, public opinion now appears divided over which party is in the wrong.
|Goo Ha-ra’s ex-boyfriend appears for questioning by police. (Yonhap)|
“We now have a case that will put to the test the government’s approach to revenge porn threats,” one commentator wrote on the major Korean web portal Naver.
“For men, a video of having sexual intercourse on equal terms can be used as a threat or gives a sense of superiority while women fall victim, which I find ironic. There are just too many social perceptions that need changing,” another user said.
Adding fuel to the fire is the response by Choi’s lawyer to the alleged revenge porn threat.
“Goo is the one who suggested filming the video in question first. The reason why (my client) uploaded the video on KakaoTalk was to return the film back to the person directly involved,” Kwak Jun-ho, who represents Choi, told JoongAng Ilbo, while denying that Choi had intended to threaten Goo with revenge porn.
The comments drew flak online because sending a video file on a messaging app does not mean that the original file has been deleted from one’s phone, or that it has been “returned.”
“Sending a film is returning it? That’s a first,” one of the many comments on Naver read.
|Goo Ha-ra is photographed at Gangnam Police Station. (Yonhap)|
Against this backdrop, a petition was filed Thursday on the presidential office’s website, calling for harsher punishments for revenge porn offenders. It had garnered over 127,000 signatures as of Friday noon.
The law firm Shin & Kim, which is defending Goo, said Thursday that it has fired multiple charges against Choi including intimidation and breaching the Act on Special Cases Concerning the Punishment of Sexual Crimes.
Those found guilty of sharing private films of a sexual nature could face up to three years in prison or a fine of up to 5 million won, even if the filming itself was consensual, according to Clause 14 of Article 2 of the act.
By Yim Hyun-su (firstname.lastname@example.org)