Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Public Pressure Grows over Probe into Actress' Suicide

Less than two years since the actress Jang Ja-yeon's suicide sparked a massive scandal due to her suicide note claiming that she was forced to perform sexual favors for influential figures, the police investigation of the events that led to her death is looking increasingly flawed. The case has reemerged after SBS disclosed 51 letters by Jang on Sunday implicating 31 people. 

The TV network claimed it obtained the letters from an acquaintance of Jang's and said police knew of their existence at the time but did apparently ignored them. 

Justice Minister Lee Gui-nam has now promised to review the letters and report his views to the National Assembly. He made the pledge at the National Assembly's Legislation and Judiciary Committee on Monday when Democratic Party floor leader Park Jie-won asked if prosecutors will reopen the case. 

Gyeonggi provincial police say they are trying to find out the truth and have asked SBS for copies of the letters.

Source: englishnews@chosun.com / Mar. 08, 2011 11:25 KST

Extra News:

Following SBS' release of the late actress Jang Ja Yeon's accusatory letters, there has been a fierce demand from the public to reopen the investigat into her suicide case.
As of late, the authorities have come under increasing public pressure to reopen the investigation of the suicide of Jang Ja Yeon, who alleged to have been forced into entertaining and providing unwilled sexual services for media heavyweights.
On March 7, 2009 the actress, aged 27, Jang was found dead in her home in Bundang, Gyeonggi Province after hanging herself.
At the demand of the public Justice Minister Lee Kwi Nam stated during a National Assembly meeting on Monday that he will consider reopening the case for further investigation.
The mass demand to reopen the case came after SBS released the main contents of the 230 pages of letters Jang had allegedly sent to one of her close aides between 2005 and just days before her death in March 2009, yesterday morning.
According to SBS, Jang wrote, ""I served 31 men. Everytime I changed my clothes I went to serve." Allegedly, the names of those she served are actually explicitly stated in the letter, and supposedly include the names of producers and other men involved in the entertainment industry. And according to SBS, the police were aware of Jang's letters but did not conduct a full investigation of them, as they claimed then that the letters were forged.
A police officer at Gyeonggi Provincial Police Agency, which handled the case two years ago stated in regards to Jang's letters, "We will first confirm whether they were written by the late actress. The relationship between Jang and the aide is also subject to the probe."
Due to privacy concerns, SBS has not disclosed those names mentioned in Jang's letters, but did, allegedly, confirm the legitimacy of the letters by having professionals match the handwriting in the letters to that of Jang's.
The newly released letters gave the public a shocking insight as to how inhumane and humiliating Jang's situation truly was. She stated in her letters she was forced to "serve" the 31 aforementioned figures at karaoke joints and upscale bars on over 100 separate occasions. According to SBS's report, Jang also said that she was even made to skip a memorial event for her parents in order to "serve" them.
In one letter, Jang called them "evil", and made the haunting statement that she would "retaliate" even after she had died, "I meet another evil whenever I earn new clothing,” She recalled in one letter, imploring her aide to take action against people she named on the list. “I will retaliate against them even after I die."
Regardless of Jang's moving accusations, it remains how aggressively the police will pursue the reopening of the case, as well as how successful they will be in procuring new evidence in order to support her claims.
During the initial investigation back in 2009, tens upon tens of entertainment bigwigs were questioned as to their relationship with the late Jang upon the basis that she was forced to have sex with them in exchange for receiving favorable treatment in the notoriously competitive industry.
Based upon their findings, the authorities demanded that 20 figures be indicted. However, prosecution refused to act, claiming a lack of concrete evidence. Of the 20, only two, Jang's manager and the head of her entertainment agency, were successfully indicted found guilty of abusing the actress.
Senior investigators also denied any relation between Jang and the questioned high-profile figures via news briefing in 2009, maintaining the allegations against the 31 were "groundless."
However, this latest development is exuding a great deal of pressure, as it has recently come into suspicion that police and persecution may have knowingly covered up critical evidence against the figures in question. Following SBS' coverage of Jang's letters yesterday morning, the public is demanding that justice be done by way of the late actress.

Source: gokpop.com

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