It has been reported that a 21-year old EXO sasaeng fan identified as Ms. Nam committed fraud and embezzlement in order to pay for her expenses in chasing after her favorite boy band day and night. She was arrested by the Gyeonggi Police on September 5.
Ms. Nam has been fraudulently making deals online. She would borrow camera equipment from a rental store, upload pictures, and pretend to sell the equipment at a discounted price without actually delivering the products to her customers.
Ms. Nam has used this method 9 times and has earned 470,000 won (approx. $458 USD) as a result. The price was enticing as the camera equipment itself, which includes a notebook, DSLR camera, and lens, usually costs up to 1,100,000 won (approx. $1,073).
Ms. Nam not only cheated her customers, she also never returned the said equipment that she borrowed, reports an allkpop article.
When questioned why she committed these crimes by the police, Ms. Nam reportedly answered, "In order to follow EXO, I need money."
The sasaeng lifestyle is definitely costly, as sasaeng fans (usually 20~40-year-olds) invest in high quality equipment to capture their favorite celebrities and pay taxis to follow them closely. Sasaengs also invest a lot of time in the hobby, as they are known to stalk and chase celebrities relentlessly night and day.
While many find sasaeng behavior to be disturbing, it's possible that these fans resort to this kind of activity in order to distract themselves from their own unhappy lives.
Ms. Nam is an unemployed high school graduate who has lost her parents. Instead of going home at night, Ms. Nam shared that she stays in a cafe located near EXO's dormitory.
At one point, she noted, "When I became a 'sasaeng', during those moments I was happy, but now I feel regretful."