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[Newsmaker] Police look into Travelholic after porn found on Instagram account

Travelholic posts its second apology on Instagram on Sunday after uploading an illegal pornographic video. (Instagram)
Travelholic posts its second apology on Instagram on Sunday after uploading an illegal pornographic video. (Instagram)

Seoul Gangnam Police Station said it has started an internal investigation into popular social media page Travelholic on Sunday, a day after its CEO Jo Jun-ki allegedly uploaded illegal porn to its Instagram account.

Travelholic, a company that introduces travel destinations and tourist attractions via social media platforms, uploaded a post introducing a sheep farm in Pyeongchang, Gangwon Province, to its Instagram account with over 1.2 million followers at around 6 p.m. Saturday. However, one of the clips included in the post showed pornography, and was taken down a few hours later.

Travelholic deleted the original post and posted an apology with a video of the waves of the sea during sunset, stating that it will make sure such an incident doesn’t happen again.

Jo confessed in the comments section of the first apology post that it was he who had posted the video by mistake.

“I am the person who uploaded the sheep farm post today. I will make no excuses. The video was downloaded from Twitter. I did not take the video. Also, the people in the video are all of the same gender. I will receive appropriate punishment for illegally downloading the video,” said Jo on Saturday.

He also said in the comments section that he will be stepping down as the CEO.

In the early hours of Sunday, Travelholic deleted the apology post and uploaded a new apology, apparently in response to growing demand for an additional explanation concerning the pornographic material and criticisms against the uploading of a video of the sea with the apology.

In the new apology, Travelholic stated that it would share the results of the investigation after reporting the case to the appropriate jurisdiction. It also said it would conduct sexual ethics training for all its workers. It announced that it would halt all activities until the case is resolved.

Local newspaper Hankook Ilbo reported Sunday that the Seoul Gangnam Police Station has started its investigation into the matter.

“The officials involved in the incident will be summoned and investigated as soon as possible,” the newspaper quoted a police official as saying.

Jo could be held accountable for possession and distribution of illegal pornography. Possession of illegal porn can result in a maximum of three years in prison or a fine of 30 million won ($25,300), while distribution of illegal pornographic material is punishable by a maximum of seven years in prison or a fine of up to 50 million won.

By Lim Jang-won (ljw@heraldcorp.com)
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