Choi Jong Bum Pleads Guilty To More Charges At Appeal Trial + Goo Hara’s Brother Calls For Stronger Punishment
Choi Jong Bum, the ex-boyfriend of Goo Hara, apologized at his appeal trial and pled guilty to charges he had previously denied.
In 2018, Goo Hara and Choi Jong Bum got into a physical altercation on September 13 around 1 a.m. Choi Jong Bum initially reported to the police that Goo Hara had assaulted him, but Goo Hara countered with claims that Choi Jong Bum had blackmailed her with a sex tape. Eventually both were forwarded to the prosecution on separate charges, but Goo Hara received a suspension of indictment while Choi Jong Bum’s case went to trial.
In 2019, he was charged by prosecutors with violating the Act on Special Cases Concerning the Punishment of Sexual Crimes (filming body parts without consent), assault causing bodily harm, intimidation (blackmail), coercion, and destruction and damage of property.
At his first trial last August, he received a prison sentence of one year and six months, suspended for three years of probation. This means that if he commits an offense during the three-year probation period, he will serve out his prison sentence for one year and six months. Both he and the prosecution filed an appeal.
On the afternoon of May 21, the first appeal trial was held for Choi Jong Bum. The main focus at the appeal trial was whether or not there had been consent for the filming. At his first trial, he had been found not guilty of filming the victim’s body without consent.
Choi Jong Bum’s lawyer stated that Choi Jong Bum accepts this ruling. “We ask for a not guilty ruling regarding the illegal filming, as was given in the first trial,” the lawyer stated.
The prosecution replied, “It was unjust that he was given a not guilty ruling regarding illegal filming in the first trial.” They asked for him to be pronounced guilty on all charges.
Goo Hara’s brother Goo Ho In appeared in court, as was his right as a family member of the deceased, and he called for severe punishment for Choi Jong Bum. He said, “My sister felt very upset and angry over the unfairness of the first trial.”
He added, “Like the victims of the nth Room, this was a traumatic experience for my sister that she wasn’t able to get rid of. Please think about this carefully and give an appropriate sentence in the second trial.”
Before the appeal trial, Choi Jong Bum had denied all the charges except the one regarding property damage, however at the trial he changed his position and apologized. He pleaded guilty to all charges except the one regarding nonconsensual filming.
“I’ve felt a lot of things and reflected a lot over the past two years,” he said. “As I wrote in my statement, regardless of the reason, I apologize to everyone related to this.”
Goo Ho In responded to this by saying, “My sister was very angry when she saw him do things like confidently hold a grand opening party with his acquaintances after he said he’d been reflecting. From the perspective of a family member, it would be difficult to call this ‘reflecting.'”
Choi Jong Bum’s sentence in his appeal trial will be announced on July 2.
Top Photo Credit: Xportsnews