What will Jung Joon-young do after being released from prison, will he walk the path of Seungri and Choi Jong-hoon?

The focus is on singer Jung Joon-young, who emerged from prison with the label of "gang raping"

On the morning of March 19th, Jung Joon-young completed his sentence at Mokpo Prison in Jeollanam-do and was released. He reportedly exited the prison wearing a mask and a hat, concealing his face from the reporters stationed outside without conveying any specific messages.

Jung Joon-young thumbnail

Jung Joon-young was accused of gang raping drunk unconscious women in Hongcheon, Gangwon-do along with former F.T. Island member Choi Jong-hoon, former YG Entertainment employee Heo, former Burning Sun employee Kim, businessman Kwon in 2016, as well as in Daegu in March of the same year. Additionally, he faced charges of illegally filming and sharing photos and videos of women several times since late 2015 in a group chatroom that included former Big Bang member Seungri and Choi Jong-hoon.

Jung Joon-young was initially sentenced to 6 years in prison, 80 hours of sexual violence treatment program and a 5-year restriction on employment at facilities related to children, adolescents and people with disabilities in the first trial in 2019. However, both Jung Joon-young and the prosecution appealed, and in the second trial, he was sentenced to 5 years in prison. Although Jung Joon-young appealed again, the Supreme Court rejected his appeal in 2020, confirming the 5-year prison term.

Choi Jong-hoon

Given the significant controversy surrounding the “Burning Sun Gate” that sparked social discussions, attention is now drawn to Jung Joon-young’s life after completing his sentence and returning to society.

After completing their sentences and being released, the “core members of the group chat room” faced backlash upon their return to the entertainment industry. 

Choi Jong-hoon, who was the first to be released in 2021 after serving 2 years and 6 months in prison, revoked his declaration of “retirement” and announced his return from overseas. In January, he opened a channel on a Japanese fan communication platform and announced his return to activities.

Seungri, who was a core figure in the Burning Sun scandal, served a prison sentence of 1 year and 6 months for violating special laws related to sexual violence crimes, habitual gambling, and other nine charges. He was released in February last year. 

Despite previously expressing his intention to retire from the entertainment industry, he did not return to it. However, he faced criticism for still not abandoning his ambitions, as evidenced by sightings of him in overseas clubs and videos of him drinking with famous people abroad, maintaining his image of the “great Gatsby.”

The “close friends” of Jung Joon-young, who received relatively lighter punishments, have all returned. Roy Kim, who received a suspended indictment, and former HIGHLIGHT’s Yong Jun-hyung, who was questioned as a witness, both returned in 2022. 

Roy Kim, Yong Jun-hyung Eddy Kim

Likewise, Eddy Kim, who also received a suspended indictment, released an album in January and made a comeback. Although they haven’t appeared on mainstream media such as TV broadcasts, they continue their activities as singers by consistently releasing albums.

The core members who participated in Jung Joon-young’s group chat turned their focus to overseas activities, while his close friends are quietly active in Korea. 

Due to the scandal, Jung Joon-young is currently on the list of all domestic broadcasting station suspensions. Moreover, considering the strong public backlash, prospects for his domestic activities seem bleak.

Despite facing restrictions such as the rejection of parole requests, public disclosure and notification of personal information, and wearing electronic monitoring devices, there are fewer constraints on online activities, as well as on activities abroad like those of Choi Jong-hoon and Park Yoo-chun. 

Furthermore, there is speculation about the possibility of immigration abroad, given his experience of living in several foreign countries due to his father’s business before his debut.

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