Can Park Shi Hoo's life get any more complicated?
Not only is the actor being tried for a rape he says was actually consensual sex, but now he is being sued by Upright Opportunity, a civil group that claims he and his legal team violated a law on sexual assault cases. The suit against Park, his lawyers and his friend, known as K, was filed on April 30.
According to a kdramastars article, the civic group claims that in revealing messages from the KakaoTalk mobile messaging service, the lawyers forgot to or intentionally chose not to blur out the name of the victim, a 22-year-old actress, known as A. Upright Opportunity claims this is a violation of a law that protects the victim's identity.
"It is difficult to forgive the actor and his lawyers, as public figures, for using the media to make the police look as if they're conducting biased investigations without objective evidence," said a statement released by the group. "The identities and phone numbers of the victim and her family have been revealed and this should be considered a serious violation."
The messages concerned an assault that allegedly took place in February when the 34-year-old actor, A and their friends went out, drank and returned to his apartment. The actress claimed that Park raped her twice that night because she was too drunk to consent. Park claimed that the actress was sober enough to consent and did so. Eyewitness testimony at the bar said A was not drunk, but the actress claimed she felt "hazy." The police found no traces of a date rape drug when they tested her.
"While it is true we met through a mutual friend at a bar there was mutual interest as man and woman, all relations we had were consensual," said Park. "I have nothing to hide surrounding the allegations, and this will be revealed upon further investigation."
Further complicating the case are the text messages sent by the actress to a friend, which implied that she was sorry she had slept with Park and should ask for a large amount of settlement money. These are the messages cited in the suit. It is also alleged that Park offered A money to settle the case out of court but that she demanded more.
A is also reported to have said that she would show off her best acting skills during the police investigation, and "make it seem like I'm the biggest victim."
The case seemed to be going in Park Shi Hoo's favor, But then in a surprising twist, lie detector tests taken by the Seoul Police favored the testimony given by A and Park was formally charged with rape.
The case promises to go on for some time and given its history, it is difficult to predict how it will be resolved. One thing is sure. Park Shi Hoo's acting career may never recover.