By Park Si-soo
Police have urged people not to share texts containing the unverified names of female celebrities involved in a sex video scandal shaking the K-pop world, saying sharing such files is punishable.
Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency issued the warning on Thursday.
"Since the scandal surfaced, text messages containing the names of female entertainers, framed as victims in the scandal, have been spreading out of control through mobile chat apps," the agency said. "It can cause serious secondary damage to the people listed."
K-pop singer Jung Joon-young, 30, admitted secretly filming himself having sex with "10 or more women" and sharing the footage with his celebrity friends in a mobile chat group in 2015-16. Rumors have it the victims include female entertainers.
Under the Privacy Protection Law, people "creating" or "sharing" information defamatory to a specific person can face a prison term of up to seven years, license suspension for up to 10 years or a 50 million won fine ($44,000).
A person sharing sex-related footage of a person recorded without his/her consent can be jailed for up to five years or fined 30 million won, in violation of the Privacy Protection Act.
In July 2008, the Supreme Court found a netizen guilty of redistributing wrong, defamatory information to a celebrity.