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[Newsmaker] Singer Kim Gun-mo to be investigated on sexual assault allegation

A sexual assault allegation against singer Kim Gun-mo will be investigated by the Gangnam Police Station, according to the prosecutors’ office Tuesday.

Lawyer Kang Yong-seok filed a case Monday at the Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office on behalf of a woman who claims to have been sexually assaulted by the singer. In the complaint, Kang accused Kim of raping his client. 

Singer Kim Gun-mo (Yonhap)
Singer Kim Gun-mo (Yonhap)

Kim’s agency denied the sexual assault allegation and said it would take legal action for defamation and making false claims.

On Friday, a YouTube channel operated by Kang and Kim Sae-eui, a former TV news reporter, posted a video of an interview in which a woman claimed to have been sexually assaulted by the singer, 51, in August 2016. The accuser said she worked at a bar in southern Seoul and that Kim, who was drinking at the bar, sexually assaulted her.

The woman said she wants “a sincere public apology” from Kim and never to see him on TV again.

“My family does not know about the incident. They watch the TV show (the SBS weekly TV show ‘My Little Old Boy’) and laugh without knowing what happened. But he appears on the show wearing a Batman character printed T-shirt, which he wore when he assaulted me. I was tortured, psychologically,” she said.

Meanwhile, another woman has come forward, accusing the singer of assault.

A video was uploaded Tuesday on the same YouTube channel, in which a woman claims that Kim assaulted her in 2007.

The woman, who claims to have worked as a manager at a bar in southern Seoul at the time, said she came forward after seeing another woman who accused Kim of sexual assault being treated like a liar.

In the video, the woman said she was having an argument with Kim’s drinking partner in another room when the singer came in and said she was being too loud. “He grabbed my hair, brought me down and punched me,” she said. She said her right eye socket and nose were broken and showed a medical report issued at the time.

She said the singer and the bar owner persuaded her not to report the incident to the police. “I am furious that a person who becomes a monster after drinking appears on TV shows as if he were an innocent, naive man,” she said.

As the controversy surrounding him grows, Kim is continuing with his engagements, including a nationwide concert tour.

At a concert in Incheon on Saturday, Kim told the audience: “I am sorry for the trouble. I will resolve the matter wisely.” The next day, SBS aired an episode of “My Little Old Boy” in which Kim proposes to pianist Jang Ji-yeon.

The two have registered their marriage and the wedding ceremony is to take place in May. The wedding was originally slated for January, but in November it was announced that it would be postponed to May due to venue issues.

By Im Eun-byel (