BTOB's Ilhoon is FREE, gets 3 years probation for smoking marijuana
The former BTOB star was previously sentenced to 2 years of prison which had fans banding together and signing petitions
After months of heartbreak and petitions, Jung Ilhoon is finally free. The K-pop idol was part of the iconic boy group BTOB before he came under fire for smoking marijuana several times. With it still being considered an illegal drug in South Korea, he was taken to court. Fans were worried as he had to leave his group and was sentenced to prison. However, the latest judgment has everyone celebrating as Ilhoon is to go free with just probation which is a gift when compared to two years of prison.
Fans were shocked when the former BTOB member’s first sentence was two years in prison. Ilhoon was being investigated while he was in the military which had everyone banding together as the punishment was too severe for a crime like his. The prosecution in fact had asked for four years of prison which had everyone wondering if they had a personal vendetta against Ilhoon. Along with fans, the K-pop idol also submitted several petitions and letters of remorse to the court. Furthermore, false evidence was unearthed with the court deciding to have a second hearing in December.
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Ilhoon’s new sentence
Ilhoon had accepted the charges of smoking marijuana from 2016 to 2019 over 161 times. But after submitting more than 80 apology letters, promising that he was not a habitual smoker nor an addict, the court has decided to change his sentence. On December 16, he was brought to court. The judge declared to a teary-eyed Ilhoon and his family that they had decided to let him go free. Instead of the previous 2-year sentence, the former BTOB star was given three years of probation. If he violates it, he will be going to prison for 2 years. Additionally, he has been ordered to 40 hours of drug treatment and a fine of 126.63 million won (~$106,955).
Court decides to let Ilhoon be free
The court came to the conclusion that Ilhoon had not smoked systematically and he did not deliberately purchase marijuana. His one-time accidental purchase was also for a small amount and he had no criminal record. They were also impressed that Ilhoon had voluntarily quit and was receiving psychiatric treatment. On top of it, he was also going through an addiction treatment online. Since the beginning of the trial, he had also submitted more than 100 statements of remorse according to the court.
They were also touched that fans had filed petitions for mercy. The judge explained his decision, “[Ilhoon’s] family shows a strong will to lead and social bonds are well maintained, so it is expected to have a positive effect in deterring recidivism.” But he warned Ilhoon, “Please keep in mind the meaning of this probation sentence and make sure that it does not reoffend.”
Happy fans celebrated as they made memes and tweets like, "Ilhoon will have to enlist again in less than 2 years but that's okay, at least he is free. at least he is coming home THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR MAKING A JUSTICE DECISION." Another shared, "Let me repeat that again " ILHOON IS FREE "." One fan commented, "Our Ilhoon is free, with 3 years probation. Hugs Melody WE'LL ALWAYS BE BY ILHOON SIDE." Another posted, "Welcome home, BTOB's JUNG ILHOON." One fan added, "I wanna give a big hug to everyone who helped us with petitions. Thank you for standing by our angel. Our prayers were answered. IH can finally be with his family. Now I pray for his safe recovery."
ilhoon melody and btob pic.twitter.com/nGbZuRyH6O— WELCOME HOME, ILHOON 👼 (@_melobeat) December 16, 2021
ilhoon will have to enlist again in less than 2 years but that's okay, at least he is free. at least he is coming home 😭😭😭😭😭 THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR MAKING A JUSTICE DECISION 😭— ILHOON FREEDOM at your service 👣 (@emchpiss) December 16, 2021
Let me repeat that again— 🍋 VITAMINS 🍋 (@Limstar8) December 16, 2021
" ILHOON IS FREE "
Welcome home, BTOB's JUNG ILHOON. 🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉🎉 pic.twitter.com/fMUXjAoV8Y— Lyy is welcoming you, ill 🍀 (@Yejiapsaaaa) December 16, 2021
I wanna give a big hug to everyone who helped us with petitions. Thank you for standing by our angel. Our prayers were answered. IH can finally be with his family. Now I pray for his safe recovery. #ILHOONISHOME@BTOB_ILL— Rukawarei (@Rukawarei) December 16, 2021