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Lee Byung Hun Blackmail Case Ends With Three-Year Conviction And Apologies

BY Julie Jones | Dec 17, 2014 09:39 AM EST


Guilty. That's the verdict in the Lee Byung Hun blackmail case, according to The defendants, model Lee Ji Yeon and GLAM's Da Hee, were sentenced to three years in prison after their third appearance in court. Lee Byung Hun, who filed the charges against Lee Ji Yeon and Kim Da Hee, was not present for the verdict, as he is currently residing in the U.S.

The bar owner, who introduced the women to Lee Byung Hun also did not attend the third trial. It's the second time that the bar owner did not show up to testify regarding circumstances surrounding the blackmail attempt.

Lee Byung Hun filed charges against Lee Ji Yeon and Kim Da Hee in August after he said they asked him for $5 million. If he did not pay them they would release video footage showing him engaged in a sexually explicit conversation. He reported them to the police.

Although the women admitted the blackmail attempt they said they did so because Lee Byung Hun and Lee Ji Yeon had an affair and the married actor broke it off suddenly. Lee Byung Hun denied having an affair with Lee Ji Yeon and said he stopped socializing with the women after he realized the extent of their financial problems.

The prosecution in the case did not find any evidence to support a relationship the women's claim. Lee Ji Yeon met with Lee Byung Hun very few times and never alone. She was also found to be dating someone else.

Lee Ji Yeon's attorney said the fact that she was dating someone else was irrelevant.

"She might have been seeing two people at the same time but the investigators have already tagged her as a female con artist. That creates a certain amount of pressure."

The prosecution said there was evidence to support a premeditated attempt to blackmail the actor.

"The co-defendants recognized him as a target for blackmail from the beginning, even though it ended as an attempt" said the prosecution spokesperson. "They asked for $5 million and used a private video to threaten him."

Da Hee submitted 14 letters of apology to the court and Lee Ji Yeon submitted four, but the prosecution said that her excuse for the blackmail, namely the affair, was not justified by the facts.

"The letters of apology they submitted contain justifications that are different from the real truth and they don't show any real signs of regret as they blamed each other."

Both Lee Ji Yeon and Da Hee apologized.

"I am sorry for the mess I've made," said Lee Ji Yeon. "I am looking back on it and I'm sorry I disappointed my family".

"I am sorry for worrying many people," said Da Hee.  She apologized to her parents and Lee Ji Yeon.

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