Reinvestigation Of Jang Ja Yeon's Sexual Abuse Case Concludes With Final Report Submitted

The Investigative Team of Past Affairs at the Supreme Prosecutors’ Office has concluded their reinvestigation of late actress Jang Ja Yeon’s sexual abuse case.

Jang Ja Yeon (who appeared in projects such as “Boys Over Flowers“) passed away in March 2009, and her death was ruled to be a suicide. She is said to have left behind a final document revealing that she had been forced to sexually entertain powerful figures in the business and media industries. At the time, the police cleared about 10 names charged for sexual abuse that were mentioned in the actress’s list, and the case ended with only her agency CEO and manager being charged for assault and defamation.

The Investigative Team of Past Affairs began a reinvestigation into several suspicions surrounding her case on April 2, 2018. On May 13, the team’s final report was submitted to the Ministry of Justice’s Committee of Past Affairs.

More than 80 people were questioned as references by the team as part of its reinvestigation. The team also indicted a former Chosun Ilbo reporter on charges of sexually assaulting Jang Ja Yeon. Questioning was conducted on the former CEO of TV Chosun Bang Jung Oh and his uncle Bang Yong Hoon.

The team also interviewed Yoon Ji Oh, a former colleague of Jang Ja Yeon who said she saw Jang Ja Yeon preparing her document and also saw her being sexually harassed. Actress Lee Mi Sook was also called in for questioning after being accused of taking advantage of the late actress for her legal battle against the CEO of her previous agency, which also managed Jang Ja Yeon.

It’s reported that the Investigative Team of Past Affairs has put forth a recommendation for an investigation into Jang Ja Yeon’s agency CEO Kim for suspicions of giving false testimony when he stated in court that he did not assault Jang Ja Yeon. The team also reportedly secured evidence that Kim had forced Jang Ja Yeon to entertain.

However, Yonhap News states that it appears it will not be easy for there to be a reinvestigation into the suspicions at the core of this case, such as the forcing of Jang Ja Yeon to serve drinks and perform sexual favors, as well as the suspected complicity of powerful figures in sexual crimes.

The team’s final report includes a request for the transfer of investigation records on these core suspicions. However, due to issues such as the passing of the statute of limitations, Yonhap describes that it appears it will be difficult for this request to extend to a recommendation for additional investigations.

The Ministry of Justice’s Committee of Past Affairs has the final say on whether an additional investigation will take place. Their decision will be announced on May 20, after they have reviewed the final report.

The Committee of Past Affairs stated, “We have requested some supplementation and revision to the Jang Ja Yeon final report, including revision to the wording.” The team has been asked by the committee to have further discussions on issues where their opinions differ.

SBS’s “8 O’Clock News” shared that the team’s final report includes content such as issues with past investigations, whether or not there was external pressure on the investigation by the newspaper Chosun Ilbo, and whether the so-called “Jang Ja Yeon’s List” exists.

In regards to the suspicions of aggravated rape that were put forward by Yoon Ji Oh, SBS reports that members of the Investigative Team of Past Affairs are divided on whether or not they should request that the prosecution consider investigation. It’s said that even at the May 13 meeting, members of the team had a heated discussion over the credibility of Yoon Ji Oh’s testimony and the truth about the existence of “Jang Ja Yeon’s List.”

Updates will be provided when available.

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Top Photo Credit: Xportsnews

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