South Korean prosecutors investigating ousted President Park Geun-hye’s irregularities have used Google’s Timeline location history service to track a plastic surgeon’s secret visits to the presidential office, it was revealed Wednesday.
Kim Young-jae, the 55-year-old owner of a luxury anti-aging clinic in southern Seoul who was indicted for performing illegal anti-aging treatments to the then-president and lying under oath, has entered Cheong Wa Dae at least 17 times, the investigators claimed during the first hearing of his trial Wednesday, based on his wife’s Timeline records.
Kim has earlier confessed that his wife accompanied him during his visits to Cheong Wa Dae.
Kim Young-jae, who runs an anti-aging clinic in southern Seoul, was indicted on suspicions of performing illegal anti-aging treatments on former President Park Geun-hye. (Yonhap)
The prosecutors, seeking for solid evidence to prove their unofficial visits to the presidential palace, discovered that Google Map’s “Your Timeline” feature saves records of past locations visited by its user. The feature keeps tabs on whereabouts of its user once GPS is agreed to be provided.
The data extracted from the mobile phone of Kim’s wife Park Chae-yoon showed she entered Cheong Wa Dae a total of 17 times. Kim’s Timeline did not hold any record before December 2014.
“It wasn’t difficult to spot her visits to Cheong Wa Dae (3 years ago) due to the exclusiveness of the location,” said the prosecutors.
Kim is suspected of treating then-President Park with anti-aging and anti-fatigue treatments, including Botox injections, without leaving official records. He reportedly entered the presidential premises without going through security checks based on his personal ties with the impeached president’s now-jailed friend Choi Soon-sil. The former president has also been arrested for corruption.
Kim is considered as a key personnel that could point lead to the president’s whereabouts during the “missing seven hours” on the day of the tragic sinking of the Sewol ferry in 2014.
But his wife’s Timeline didn’t have any record of a visit to Cheong Wa Dae on April 16, 2014, the day of the Sewol ferry disaster. It is speculated that the president may have been up to something other than work for the seven hours, with many suspecting cosmetic surgery.
Kim’s 46-year-old wife runs a medical device manufacturing company called Y. Jacobs Medical and is accused of bribing the wife of a former presidential secretary with luxury bags and free cosmetic treatments to pull government strings.
By Jung Min-kyung (firstname.lastname@example.org