OMEGA X's Agency Refutes Claims About Member Made By SPIRE Entertainment

Warning: Mentions of sexual harassment and abuse.

OMEGA X’s current agency has spoken out against claims by their former agency SPIRE Entertainment.

Previously on March 19, SPIRE Entertainment held a press conference showing CCTV footage of OMEGA X member Hwichan and the agency’s former CEO Kang Sung Hee, claiming that Kang Sung Hee was comforting Hwichan when she was touched inappropriately by Hwichan.

On March 20, OMEGA X’s current agency IPQ Inc. released the following statement to refute the claims:

Hello, this is IPQ.

We express deep regret over the press conference held by SPIRE Entertainment on March 19, 2024. We would like to clarify our official stance on the disgraceful allegations made against our artist OMEGA X and member Hwichan.

1. The drinking party revealed in the CCTV was not to relieve the worries of the members who were issued military enlistment warrants but was forced by the high-ranking executives in the company as usual.

According to SPIRE Entertainment’s claim, on July 11, 2022, member Hwichan attended a drinking party to express his worries about military enlistment and requested a separate meeting with former CEO Kang Sung Hee. However, contrary to the claim, Hwichan’s military enlistment warrant was actually issued on August 1, 2022, and he was notified of his mid-September enlistment date. The day of the drinking party was before the warrant was even issued. Saying that they were there to resolve his “post-warrant worries” proves that the claim is false.

The drinking party that started on the evening of July 10 was not to listen to the members’ worries but was forced to console Kang Sung Hee, who was upset saying that the members did not understand her efforts to increase album sales after its release. Also, during the drinking party that continued until dawn on July 11, it can be confirmed through the attached materials below that CEO Hwang Sung Woo showed actions of waking up members who were sleeping in the dorm to make them drink, proving that it was not a place to just listen to the members’ worries.

Member 1: Sebin is sleeping
Member 2: Ok
Member 3: How about CEO Kang?
Member 2: We’re by the GS (convenience store)
Member 1: CEO Kang is talking to Hwichan right now
Member 4: CEO Kang is speaking with Hwichan at the company.
Member 1: Oh no haha
Member 5: Chairman is saying that he will wake everyone up and make them drink?
Member 1: Ah. Go to sleep everyone. I will go myself today.

2. We inform you about the frequent drinking parties forced by senior executives, continuous verbal abuse and physical assault, gaslighting, demands for affectionate expressions and physical contact, and coercive attitudes toward the members.

As mentioned above, Kang Sung Hee and Hwang Sung Woo forced the members to attend drinking parties several times during their contract period. In addition, the members experienced severe psychological stress due to years of continuous gaslighting and coercive behavior. They were filled with fear of retaliation, such as being excluded from album activities or facing restrictions on styling and promotions, if they avoided excessive demands of affectionate expressions and physical contact from Kang Sung Hee or did not comply obediently with her demands.

We want to inform you about the situation on July 11 within this atmosphere.

On July 11, which the CCTV footage was revealed of, despite it being past 2 a.m., Hwang Sung Woo insisted on also drinking with the members who were resting or sleeping at the dorm, even continuing the forced drinking session at the dorm. SPIRE Entertainment explained this as an occasion to listen to Hwichan’s concerns about his enlistment, but it makes no sense that Hwichan shared concerns ahead of his enlistment when his warrant had not even been issued yet. In addition, according to the testimonies of the members and the former manager who were present at the time, it was Kang Sung Hee who demanded a private meeting with Hwichan.

After the staff and other members excluding Hwichan left, Kang Sung Hee demanded excessive affectionate expressions and physical contact from Hwichan, and as no one else was present, Hwichan had no choice to obey as he was fearful of the threatening words and verbal abuse or physical assault that would occur if he did not comply. Despite SPIRE Entertainment referring to this as “indecent act by compulsion,” the revealed CCTV footage does not show any signs of compulsion in Hwichan’s actions nor does it show refusal from the other individual. It can be seen [through this footage] that there were demands by Kang Sung Hee who regularly forced affectionate expressions and physical contact and that there were no expressions of refusal or signs of compulsion because they are demands she made herself. After being coerced to make physical contact several times, Hwichan fell asleep while intoxicated. Kang Sung Hee then took a photo of Hwichan sleeping and even sent it to the manager and dissuaded the manager who said they would pick Hwichan up, saying that she would take him personally, which is an action that contradicts the narrative of her being a victim of his “indecent act by compulsion.”

Nevertheless, even after Hwichan fell asleep, Kang Sung Hee continued to yell that he wake up and persisted in demanding affectionate gestures and physical contact, maintaining a coercive attitude. Feeling overwhelmed by fear and pressure due to prolonged gaslighting as well as a sense of shame in having to carry out excessive physical contact with a company executive of similar age to his parents, Hwichan fled to the first floor of the company building. However, in the process, he tripped on the stairs, sustaining injuries and being unable to stand back up. Kang Sung Hee then approached Hwichan, who was lying on the ground beneath the stairs unable to move, and performed strange actions including stepping on his head and dancing in front of him. Hwichan, filled with fear, used all of his effort and escaped to the first-floor restroom, but Kang Sung Hee continued following him and shouting, causing him mental and physical distress.

This situation continued until past 5 a.m., and the former manager and member Kevin, who were worried about Hwichan not returning home until late after the drinking party started, returned to the company around 5:45 a.m. and found Kang Sung Hee, who was taking a picture of herself in front of the mirror in the first floor lobby of the company building, and Hwichan, who was hiding in the bathroom with the door locked. The photo of Kang Sung Hee that she took herself in front of the mirror at the time can also be checked through a post uploaded on her Facebook account.

3. It is completely false that the members began to lose trust in the agency starting with the incident on July 11, 2022 and that they recorded audio and filmed illegally to create a pretext.

The verbal abuse, physical violence, coercive behavior, and demands for affectionate expressions toward OMEGA X members by Kang Sung Hee and Hwang Sung Woo were not filmed under a fabricated situation after a specific time but were prolonged instances of abuse of power as revealed several times through photos and videos. We possess numerous records of conversations between the members and Kang Sung Hee and Hwang Sung Woo which date back to before July 11, 2022, and please note that we plan to separately release the relevant data with additional evidence that has not been made public before. Please understand that this is cruel additional harm to treat the efforts made by 11 young individuals, who worked hard to not lose sight of their dreams after earning a precious second chance, to let the world know after withstanding the ensuing verbal abuse and assault for a long time as simply a “pretext” to leave the agency.

4. We inform you of the notice regarding the case of assault against Jaehan at a hotel in Los Angeles in October 2022 being forwarded to the prosecution.

We would like to inform you of the notice regarding the case of Kang Sung Hee’s assault against Jaehan at a hotel in Los Angeles in October 2022 being forwarded to the prosecution, which we announced through IPQ’s official social media on March 19. After the police investigation, the decision was made that it was necessary to forward the case to the prosecution, thus it was clearly “forwarded,” and further evidence has been requested for more accurate judgment. We would like to clarify that this does not mean that the transfer has been canceled and that the transfer of Kang Sung Hee’s assault case remains valid.

5. Finally, we urge SPIRE Entertainment to provide additional evidence for the sake of the truth.

It is insufficient to justify their claims with just the mere CCTV footage that they released, and failure to rectify their claims that cannot be fully proven is a more fatal act than anything else especially for entertainers who continue their professional activities under constant scrutiny of the public. We request that they disclose all CCTV footage from the day and the day following the incident without editing, and in addition to the CCTV footage that was released, please disclose all evidence such as from the conference room and corridors on the second floor as well as the entire first floor with which we can grasp the full context of the incident. If the released CCTV footage has been forensically restored, it is understood that other CCTVs installed in the office at the time can also be recovered and checked, and we intend to request this additional footage as evidence to the investigative authorities.

We express deep regret and strongly criticize SPIRE Entertainment for their unilateral claims based on fragmented CCTV footage. The footage fails to accurately represent the overall context of the incident and is being used unjustly to portray Hwichan as a perpetrator of an indecent act by compulsion. We once again demand the release of all CCTV footage from that day and call for cooperation to uncover the truth. We will pursue legal action for the false allegations against Hwichan for an indecent act by compulsion.

We express deep concern for the unjust situation faced by OMEGA X and will make every effort to protect the rights and honor of all our artists including member Hwichan by using all available legal means. We request the active cooperation of all parties involved to ensure a fair and accurate investigation.

We hope for a swift resolution to the unjust suffering endured by the members who, despite enduring abnormal behavior within SPIRE Entertainment for two years, refused to give up on their dreams. We remain confident that the truth will eventually be revealed.

Finally, we express our gratitude to everyone including fans for their unwavering love and support amidst the prolonged legal proceedings, lawsuits, and dissemination of false information. We pledge to maintain transparency and honesty to regain the trust of our artists, fans, and the public.

Thank you.

Source (1)

How does this article make you feel?


Please login to Soompi to join the conversation!

Similar Articles