The case revolved around allegations dating back to August 2016, when Yang Hyun Suk was accused of attempting to obstruct an investigation by intimidating a former trainee who had testified in an alleged drug investigation involving B.I, a former member of the K-pop group iKON, during his time at YG Entertainment. Previously, Yang Hyun Suk had received a non-guilty judgment in the case, but the prosecution appealed, arguing that the victim’s statements were credible. The court ultimately found Yang Hyun Suk guilty, while also sentencing a former YG managing associate, Mr. Kim, to four months in prison with a one-year probation term, reported Korean news portal.
According to allkpop, the court stated, “The prosecution lodged an appeal, purporting the victim’s statement was credible. Nonetheless, the amendments to the indictment involved a forced interview with Yang Hyun Suk, hampering the defendant’s right to defense.” The court elaborated that the recognition of a credible threat would only occur if the victim was subjected to a particular form of harm and noted, “The victim’s account fluctuated significantly, and if there were portions she only recalled mid-investigation, it is difficult to assert that the alterations in her statement were wholly natural. The prosecution failed to yield tangible evidence, making it a challenge to substantiate their allegation of harm under undisclosed circumstances.”
The court acknowledged that Yang Hyun Suk’s actions, such as hosting a forced meeting and using his influence to reprimand B.I, were inappropriate and may have caused undue pressure. In their final ruling regarding Yang Hyun Suk and Mr. Kim, both receiving deferred sentences, the court emphasized, “In his capacity as the representative of YG, he abused his social status and wielded authority over B.I through reprimands, thus finding him culpable.”