S Korean SC upholds lower court's prison sentences for disgraced singers Jung Joon-young, Choi Jong-hoon for rape, other crimes

KATHMANDU: South Korea's Supreme Court on September 24 upheld a lower court's prison sentences for singers Jung Joon-young and Choi Jong-hoon convicted of rape and other crimes, according to Yonhap News Agency.

Jung, a disgraced singer and TV personality, and Choi, a former member of band FT Island, were sentenced in May to five years and two-and-half years, respectively, in prison by an appeals court on charges including sexually assaulting women in 2016.

Jung and Choi had received prison terms of six and five years, respectively, from a Seoul district court in November 2019, but the Seoul High Court had reduced the terms by one and two-and-half years, respectively, reports Yonhap.

The two singers, both 31, were convicted of raping women during drinking parties in Hongcheon, Gangwon Province, in January 2016 and in Daegu in March of the same year, together with other members of a mobile chat room. Jung was given a heavier prison term as he was also indicted on charges of secretly filming himself having sex with women and sharing the footage with friends on mobile chats.

The SC ruled that the Seoul High Court's ruling was not unlawful in convicting the two on charges of aggravated quasi-rape and forced sexual harassment, dismissing the appeals by the two defendants.

It also rejected their claim their mobile chat room conversations used by prosecutors to back up their criminal charges were illegally collected, according to Yonhap.