By Lee Kyung-min
A coalition of women denounced the police, Friday, over what they deem a "deliberate failure" in cracking down on voyeur video crimes victimizing women, in the latest development of the collective movement calling for "equal accountability for equal crime" spreading across Korea in recent months.
Members of about 30 women's group gathered in front of the National Police Agency in Seoul, denouncing the police for treating victims differently based precisely on gender thus far.
"Many women have filed countless complaints over the past decade involving illicitly filmed videos and screen captures. And all we have heard was 'We can't locate the perpetrator,' 'We can't delete the materials because the website is on overseas servers' and 'Just forget it.' It is apparent you have lied to us the whole time," the group said in a statement.
"We demand the police apologize immediately, own up to their discriminatory behavior thus far and conduct a rigorous investigation into cases involving female victims, just as they did with male ones."
The collective denouncement came after the Busan Metropolitan Police Agency said a district court issued an arrest warrant for the operator of WOMAD, a radical feminist group, on charges of defamation and abetting dissemination of sexually explicit materials online.
The female suspect, who opened the website using an overseas server, posted photos of the interiors of male bathhouses in February. Police said international cooperation with relevant authorities including Interpol was under way to seek the prompt extradition of the operator.
The group said police abetted hidden camera crimes committed against women, urging them to mobilize utmost efforts to prove otherwise.
"The only way for police to prove they are not a gender-biased, unfair institution is to swiftly crack down on perpetrators that continue ― at this very moment ― to share illicitly taken materials that objectify, degrade and belittle women."