On October 14, former Big Bang member Seungri (30) attended a second hearing session with the military court. Seungri is currently facing a total of 8 criminal charges including: solicitation of prostitution, embezzlement, illegal gambling, violation of food sanitation laws, etc.
First, legal representatives from Seungri's side and the prosecution's side took turns presenting evidence, selecting and debating over the evidence necessary for the court to make its final decision, and selecting the list of witness who will be appearing in future hearings.
In the process of reviewing evidence presented by both sides, the prosecution argued that Seungri violated food sanitation law by presenting a series of images, capturing the interior of Seungri's formerly owned food and drink establishment Monkey Museum. In response to this, Seungri's side stated, "The original source of these images is unclear, therefore we cannot agree that the images are valid evidence."
Next, the prosecution also presented evidence that Seungri distributed a photo of three nude women in a Kakao chat room shared with Jung Joon Young, Choi Jonghun, etc. Seungri's side claimed that he obtained the image from an employee who worked at an adult establishment in Singapore, and therefore, he did not directly violate digital sexual harassment laws.
The prosecution also presented evidence in the form of witness comments obtained by police during earlier stages of the investigation, including comments by witnesses directly involved in Seungri's birthday party in The Philippines. Related to this evidence, Seungri is facing charges of aiding in the solicitation of prostitution during this party in The Philippines. However, it was pointed out by Seungri's legal side that these witness comments obtained during earlier police questionings were not valid forms of evidence due to the fact that the right of the defendant's side to cross-examine these witnesses was not secured. Regarding this statement, the court commented, "It's a wonder how this would have played out in civil court."
Later on, the court agreed on a total of 22 witnesses who will be summoned in future hearings to testify in Seungri's 8 criminal accusations, including Jung Joon Young, Yoo In Suk, Kim In Chul who will be testifying regarding illegal solicitation of prostitution as well as regarding digital sexual harassment/assault violations; 6 others who will testify regarding food sanitation violations, 7 others who will testify regarding embezzlement, etc. Among the 22 witnesses selected, Seungri's side noted that it would be difficult to summon some foreign witnesses from Japan and Hong Kong who were listed as illegal prostitution buyers, due to the COVID19 situation. The court dismissed this comment and criticized Seungri's side for failing to obtain witness testimonies as evidence on their end, remarking, "If you wanted to prove your innocence, you should have [obtained their testimonies] during the investigation stage."
In context of the above account involving foreign witnesses, Seungri is facing accusations of soliciting prostitution on numerous occasions for foreign investors from Taiwan, Japan, and Hong Kong from December of 2015 through January of 2016. During this court hearing, Seungri's legal representative again emphasized, "The defendant had no motive whatsoever for soliciting prostitution for investors of any kind, nor did he ever solicit prostitution for himself."
The next court hearing will take place on November 12, involving witnesses affiliated with the criminal charges of soliciting illegal prostitution and violation of digital sexual harassment/assault laws.