Jung Ilhoon drug case: Prosecution seeks 2-year jail, fine of $107K for BTOB singer
Melody's as well as his solo fans want it to end with Ilhoon finally free of all charges but it looks like the Korean law does not sail in the same boat. On November 18, after an afternoon session at the 13th Criminal Divison, the former member of the K-pop group BTOB appeared before Chief Judge, Choi Soo-hwan following his impending drug scandal in a trial appealed against the idol for his habitual cannabis usage in violation of the Narcotics Control Act.
Jung Ilhoon was found guilty of habitual consumption of cannabis (weed) and after he admitted to the charges, he appealed for mercy in the form of more than 80 letters of reflection sent to the court time after time appealing for leniency in his sentence. During his hearing today, the prosecution demanded that Jung Ilhoon be incarcerated for two years. While during the initial trial it was requested that Ilhoon be sentenced along with a fine of 130 million won (110, 300 USD), this time around, the prosecution demanded that Ilhoon be charged with two years in prison as well as a total fine of 126.63 million won (107,389 USD).
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Details on Ilhoon’s drug scandal
In December 2020, it had been reported that Ilhoon was under investigation by the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency for purchasing and using marijuana over the past 4–5 years. Ilhoon admitted to the charge in April of 2021 during his first trial after he was charged for violating the Narcotics Control Act. June 10, 2021, he was sentenced to two years in prison for marijuana usage but his appeals led his case to be handed over to prosecution in July of 2021.
After his first trial, Ilhoon accepted all charges and came out with a statement saying, “I am sincerely reflecting. I am very sorry. I was under a lot of stress while working in the entertainment industry at a young age, and I tried to solve it in the wrong way.” It is reported that Ilhoon’s side appealed on the grounds that “the number of actual marijuana purchases was more than the actual number of times Ilhoon used drugs which is why there was a misunderstanding of related laws such as fines.”
Since the appeal, Jung Ilhoon has submitted a letter of reflection a total of 88 times, appealing for leniency. Reports from the case suggest that Jung Ilhoon is charged with remittance of 130 million won in 161 collusions with 7 other defendants for buying 826 g of hemp (cannabis), liquid hemp, and more. In the process, it was revealed that Ilhoon even used cryptocurrency to avoid police investigation.
Fans call Ilhoon's sentencing unfair
Fans of BTOB as well as his solo stans find that this sentence is invalid in terms of the gravity of his crimes when compared to the sentences faced by other artists from the industry who have been held accountable on counts of multiple sexual offenses. Fans have brought to light how the former member of the rock band, F.T. Island, Choi Jong-hun who was incarcerated for gang rape as well as other scandals under the Burning Sun controversy.
Choi Jong-hun was initially charged five years in prison for his offenses but was freed in November 2021 after a reduction of his sentence to 2.5 years. Fans of Ilhoon are now drawing comparisons based on how Ilhoon is being charged a similar sentence for smoking weed while a sexual offender gets away with an almost similar sentence.
'He doesn't deserve this'
Fans sent in positive vibes for the idol while some drew conclusions over the justice system in South Korea. One fan said, "I will wait, I promise I will wait whatever the result. I will continually pray for you!" Another fan said, "I miss Ilhoon so much. I hope he’s just really doing fine throughout this entire process." Another fan claimed, "He doesn't deserve this,,, cmon," while one more asserted, "2 years won’t be that long. Hang in there. We’ll wait for you."
Other fans questioned the sanity of the sentence saying, "Btob’s ilhoon is supposedly getting 2 years (after filing for a lower sentence, originally they wanted for him to serve 5 years) and this mf got the same for a bigger crime??? Make it make sense." Another fan said, "I don't know if I can talk about this but I love Ilhoon and I want to talk. I think everything is f*cked up honestly. The thing he did wasn't that serious. 2 years for that is f*cking ridiculous. Sk laws are bullsh*t." Another fan claimed, "I just wanted to remind you all that ilhoon was sentenced to 2 YEARS for smoking weed." Another fan said, "I cannot tell you how disgusted I am, f*ck SK for this."
I miss Ilhoon so much. I hope he’s just really doing fine throughout this entire process.— Gale is closing. (@IlhoonShine) November 18, 2021
he doesn't deserve this,,, cmon— joy will wait for ilhoon (@yeajiapsa) November 18, 2021
2 years won’t be that long. Hang in there. We’ll wait for you.— Gale is closing. (@IlhoonShine) November 18, 2021
The prosecution demanded 2 years of imprisonment for ilhoon… But nothing certain for now— 김너굴 (@youaremy_1004) November 18, 2021
Btob’s ilhoon is supposedly getting 2 years (after filing for a lower sentence, originally they wanted for him to serve 5 years) and this mf got the same for a bigger crime??? Make it make sense. https://t.co/lDsL4GviT4— MC JWOO 🐶 (@yunofilter_11) November 14, 2021
I don't know if I can talk about this but I love Ilhoon and I want to talk. I think everything is fucked up honestly. The thing he did wasn't that serious. 2 years for that is fucking ridiculous. Sk laws are bullshit.— Rut :) (@freehugsilhoon) November 13, 2021
I just wanted to remind you all that ilhoon was sentenced to 2 YEARS for smoking weed🤡 https://t.co/QTqRnHMuXM— patt (@patthoon) November 8, 2021
and ilhoon got 2 years for weed... make it make sense...— 🌙 tammy jo🌙 (@youngksfox) November 8, 2021