Korean man gets off indecent assault conviction because of the way he masturbated

Here’s a slice of legal trivia: At around 5 p.m. one evening in September last year, celebrity manager (let’s call him Mr. A), followed a woman (Ms. B) into her office in the trendy Gangnam area of Seoul. Once inside he began to pleasure himself directly in front of her.

When Ms. B saw the man stood in the doorway performing the unsightly act, she naturally screamed and began throwing things at him. After about 30 seconds of screaming and being showered at with office supplies, Mr. A abruptly stopped what he was doing and ran away.

He didn’t get far though. Police picked him up promptly after Ms. B notified them and arrested him for indecent assault. This would seem like an open and shut case, right?

Apparently not.

 Despite having pursued Ms. B and openly masturbated before her very eyes, Mr. A was not convicted for doing so. Rather, the investigation and ensuing trial hinged on whether or not Mr. A had done or threatened to do Ms. B any physical harm.

Judge Yoo Sang-jae of Seoul Central District Court explained during the sentencing why Mr. A was found not guilty:

“[Mr. A] only watched and he did not hit, threaten to hit, or approach [Ms. B]… He did not have a weapon, nor was he forcibly subjecting her to his masturbation activities, nor did he even use threatening words. The court also took into consideration that [Mr. A] ran away quickly after the victim started throwing things and make loud noises.”

So, apparently this guy was either incredibly lucky or – as unbelievable as it may seem – knew exactly how and how long he should pleasure himself to avoid a conviction. In addition, since he was found not guilty of indecent assault, Mr. A was also automatically cleared of all the related charges, such as misdemeanors.

However, don’t be too quick to become outraged over this terrible miscarriage of justice. As if this were some kind of pornographic M. Night Shyamalan movie, there’s yet another twist to this tale.

During the investigation, Mr. A was found to be connected with four other sex offences. One such incident occurred in March, 2012 in Gangnam when he had entered an office building elevator and pressed the emergency stop button while masturbating in front of a female passenger.

He was convicted of all the other four counts of indecent behavior and sentenced to five years in prison. Following that he must disclose his personal information publicly for six years and wear a GPS ankle bracelet for a further 10.

And so, with another sex offender safely behind bars thanks to the fine work of Seoul’s finest, there’s just one more thing to do; start working on Gangnam Style jokes.

Source: Donga (Korean) via Itai News (Japanese)

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