≡ Menu

Man rapes mentally handicapped kid, walks on appeal because he shows regret

In an appeal decision, a Seoul High Court bench recently let a 54-year-old man convicted of sexually assaulting a mentally handicapped 15-year-old girl walk on parole because, well, he regretted what he did.

The attack happened in May when the guy gave the girl a lift in Gapyeong. He brought her to his home and sexually assaulted her.

In the first trial, the court handed the guy a three-year sentence. In its ruling, the court said the defendant’s crime was particularly heinous because the girl was just 15 and mentally handicapped.

Seoul High Court, however, is apparently composed of more sympathetic sorts. They felt the defendant was not fully aware of the girl’s age and mental condition when he committed the crime. The bench explained that the man immediately felt bad about what he did; after hugging her out of sympathy, crying and washing her with warm water (something less empathetic justices might misinterpret as “destroying evidence,” as noted by some Segye Ilbo commenters), he dropped her off near her home, giving us an idea of the circumstances of the crime. The girl’s mother, impressed by the devotion and effort of the defendant’s wife, submitted a plea for leniency to the court (another WTF element to this story), and the defendant showed regret and atonement throughout the court of his confinement and trial. Or so the bench noted.

Thank God for the judge that he didn’t post anything nasty about the president on Facebook, or else he’d really be up shit’s creek.

Now, I’ve never seen sites like Youporn or Redtube, and certainly not Hegre Art, where the high quality of photography more than makes up for the over-reliance on admittedly pretty but skinny Eastern European models. Or so I’ve been told. Nevertheless, I can’t imagine any of those sites have anywhere near as harmful an impact on sex crime rates as rulings like this.

About the author: Just the administrator of this humble blog.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    RK, I appreciate your posting stuff like this. I think that it’s important that Koreans be subject to (basically the ridicule of) onlookers from outside the Hermit Kingdom.

    I’ve been writing for three years about the “I was drunk” defense and bullying in Korean culture. Perhaps I had only a shovel in a snow storm’s effect, but I believe I had an effect. If we all picked up our shovels, we can clear some sidewalks. Still, the lactic acid buildup from all the shoveling gets to me.

  • HSchmidt

    This just shows how uncivilized Korean society really is.

    Letting off a criminal who sexually assaulted a mentally handicapped 15 year old girl, mail order bride industry and generally a very gender-biased society.

    Why is Korea following social trends of uncivilized third world countries?

  • Anonymous_Joe

    “The girl’s mother, impressed by the devotion and effort of the defendant’s wife, submitted a plea for leniency to the court (another WTF element to this story), and the defendant showed regret and atonement throughout the court of his confinement and trial.

    Yet another WTF element is the devotion, or what others might call “enabling”, of the defendant’s wife.

  • Eris Guy

    Korea become more like the US everyday.

    Umm.. “the defendant’s crime was particularly heinous” and “three-year sentence” don’t belong together.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    Apparently, the Seoul High Court agrees with you.

  • 코리아

    Personally, I took “impressed by the devotion and effort of the defendant’s wife” as meaning that she was suitably impressed by the thickness of the envelope she was handed before submitting the plea.

  • thejd

    But how much money are we talking about here? Seems like if the guy had real cash, he wouldn’t be roaming the streets; he’d just pay for it at one of the million places around town that specialize in that sort of thing. So, I would guess whatever payoff there was, it wasn’t really all that big.

    I’m asking not as a challenge to your theory that money changed hands.

    I seriously wonder how much you think it was.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    Wow.

    …just wow.

  • wangkon936

    AJ,

    It could be that Korean society hasn’t gotten as jaded as American culture and that it’s more naive. The real problem might be if Korea has a specific law on the matter. That would mean that these types of incidents happen all too often.

  • wangkon936

    Judging an entire society based on one incident is a bit harsh, don’t you think?

  • Cloudfive

    Could someone explain the compensation system to me? Does this mean that someone who pays compensation cannot be punished/imprisoned? This story and the other rape of the 12 year old girl disgusts me. Will either be publicly registered as a sex offender? WTF is wrong with the parents that they don’t want to prosecute? Is it really about the money or is it fear of publicity? Are these lenient judges pedophiles and rapists themselves, protecting their own? I just don’t get it.

    I personally want to slap the mother of the victim, find the man and kick him in the face and put posters of his face and crime all over his neighborhood.

  • http://www.askakorean.net/ The_Korean

    http://askakorean.blogspot.com/2011/04/what-is-all-this-about-blood-money.html

    Also, please note that the law is now revised such that all sex crimes are now public crimes, which means no more criminal settlement.

  • keyinjpop

    One? Come on now, you know there’s more than one case of this.

  • wangkon936

    Of course I know that, but that’s not what HSchmidt said. If one Japanese protester hacks off someone elses’ body parts with a samurai sword does that mean all of Japan is uncivilized? It’s happened more than once…

  • Anonymous_Joe

    wangkon, I would not judge an entire society by the actions of one individual, but I draw conclusions and make up my mind quickly about a society based on its institutions. The court’s decision represents Korea’s courts. The sick bastard is just that, one sick bastard. I’m much more dismayed by the Korean court than the pathological incident.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    See my comment above. Those Japanese protesters are individuals. Courts are society.

  • Ben Wagner

    I thought Korea had decided to get tough on sexual offenses against children? Between this case and last week’s case of a Korean teacher who raped a 12-year-old student and walked because “she loved him” I’m beginning to have my doubts.

    “Male teacher had sex with student, but not prosecuted”
    http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/nation/2012/12/116_126370.html
    http://news.donga.com/3/all/20121207/51381766/1

  • jk641

    I don’t know if you characters here are aware of this, but Korean courts are not representative of Korean society in general.

    The Korean public is getting angrier and angrier at courts for not punishing sex offenders properly.
    This latest flub by the Seoul High Court will probably trigger more public outcry.
    Many liberal-minded judges need to be replaced.

  • http://profiles.google.com/dcmusicfreak DC Musicfreak

    I’m pretty sure HSchmidt is a Korean nationalist trolling under a Western name. Nothing he says makes much sense or is even germane to the threads they are posted on.

  • bumfromkorea

    At the point where the guys in question can’t even distinguish a Korean individual from the whole country/ethnicity, or refuse to, I think that is an expected result.

  • jk641

    That’s what being prejudiced is all about, isn’t it?

    Before they make sweeping comments about Korea/Koreans, they should study the recent polls, which indicate that Koreans overwhelmingly favor harsher punishment for sex offenders.

  • cactusmcharris

    So, in the learned judge’s / court’s opinion, this guy’s never going to reoffend? I’m sorry to say I go for more visceral punishment for this kind of thing. Castration would be letting him off easy.

  • http://www.askakorean.net/ The_Korean

    I can’t wait until next year, when the newly strengthened law against sex crimes will be implemented.

  • wangkon936

    What is sad is that the reason why these laws are getting strengthened is because these crimes are getting more common.

  • http://kuiwon.wordpress.com/ Kuiwon

    Is adultery still a crime in Korea? I remember reading an article while back that the National Assembly was considering getting rid of it. If it is no longer a crime, that’s a shame, because a number of these offenders are married.

  • 코리아

    Are they really? Or is it that victims are willing to come forward more often, the police and prosecutors are more willing to file charges, and of course the internet age makes it impossible to keep it quiet? I tend to believe that sex crimes in most societies have always existed and at fairly consistent levels. What is changing is the response to them. As this story shows, Korea isn’t all the way there yet, but (outside of the ridiculous internet porn ban) things are headed in a better direction.

  • 코리아

    Unfortunately that won’t matter much if decisions like this are being made. I know this is an isolated case and the judge is likely to be crucified for it by the public, but still hard not to be angry about this guy walking.

  • http://www.askakorean.net/ The_Korean

    Adultery is still a crime, but that won’t be relevant in most cases like this. Adultery is a private crime, which means that the spouse (most likely wife) has to bring the case. Plus, to establish adultery, you pretty much have to catch the person in the act.

  • 코리아

    Hmmm…I guess I might as well answer (but with the disclaimer that I don’t support nor recommend this yourself)

    1. On the amount, hard to speculate, but it would certainly feel like the girl’s family would be in the lower class, so maybe wouldn’t take too much.

    2. When you’re looking at prison (even for an already appallingly low three years), I think one will find the money somewhere, possibly from the back-alley loan network.

    3. If the guy is the sort to get off on assaulting a 15 yo mentally handicapped girl, then he’s probably not satisfied by paying for a prostitute.

    I know that officially sex crime perps can’t compensate their way out of prosecution anymore, but I think it will take some time for the social mentality of some (and apparently this judge) to catch up with the law.

  • http://www.rjkoehler.com Robert Koehler

    I just summarized a story I read in a newspaper. And there are a lot of these sorts of stories. Which is to say, the local press and netizenry seem to be doing just fine calling the authorities out on crap like this.

  • http://www.rjkoehler.com Robert Koehler

    Oh, I don’t know—I’d say modern Korean history has produced a lot of jaded folk.

  • http://www.rjkoehler.com Robert Koehler

    That’s sort of how I understood it.

  • http://www.rjkoehler.com Robert Koehler

    The Marmot’s Hole: Sweeping comments about Korea/Koreans, since 2003.

  • wangkon936

    Yes…. politically.

  • http://www.rjkoehler.com Robert Koehler

    I mean, they did produce a movie lionizing a guy who shot an arrow at a judge. I’d say that’s pretty effing jaded.

  • wangkon936

    Well, he could be an English teacher for a private hagwon and ethnically Turkish or Eastern European.

  • wangkon936

    Well, that would kinda be politically jaded.

  • wangkon936

    Not something to be pride of IMHO.

  • http://www.rjkoehler.com Robert Koehler

    I’m not. Hence the gallows humor.

  • bumfromkorea

    How much is this due to the judges, and how much is this due to the relevant laws? As my dad likes to say whenever he hears something like this, “Every judge who’s older than 40 right now should be forcibly retired.”

  • http://www.rjkoehler.com Robert Koehler

    Actually, I’m wondering about the numbers myself. I know the numbers are going up, but yeah, I suspect this is at least partially due to higher reporting rates. I also suspect the focus on sex crimes in certain quarters of the media is partially motivated by politics.

  • cactusmcharris

    WK,

    I didn’t know you swung that way.