CJ ENM Vice President Reportedly Booked Over Suspected Involvement In “Produce X 101” Manipulation
MBC’s “News Desk” reported on November 12 that Shin Hyung Kwan, the vice president of CJ ENM and the person in charge of Mnet, has been booked as a suspect by the police.
A search and seizure has also been conducted on his office, and it’s reported that the police acquired a computer hard drive and other materials related to Mnet’s audition programs. Shin Hyung Kwan has been in charge of Mnet’s shows including the “Produce 101” series and “Idol School,” which are under suspicion of vote manipulation.
A source from the police stated, “Vice President Shin was booked as a suspect in order for the search and seizure warrant to be issued.”
“Produce X 101” producing director Ahn Joon Young and chief producer Kim Yong Bum were arrested last week, and MBC describes this most recent development as due to the police now aiming their investigation at higher ranking staff within CJ ENM.
The police source stated that they need to look into the suspicions regarding Shin Hyung Kwan further. MBC reports that while they made a cautious statement, the police are determining if Shin Hyung Kwan was deeply involved in the ranking manipulation as he frequently communicated with the production team.
After analyzing the materials obtained through the search and seizure, the police may call Shin Hyung Kwan in for questioning following the confirmation of suspicions.
Earlier on November 12, the police announced at a press conference that they have booked 10 individuals related to “Produce X 101” including high-ranking officials from CJ, Ahn Joon Young, chief producer (CP) Kim Yong Bum, a producing director (PD) named “Lee,” and Starship Entertainment’s vice president “Kim.” The individuals are expected to be forwarded to the prosecution on November 14.