Jung Jin Woo, former idol and a member of the group M2M will have to spend a year in jail after he was proven guilty of gambling. Korea is known to be very strict with this offense so he was sentenced to go to jail.
The Seoul Southern District Court stated that Jung Jin Woo was found to have spent around KRW3.4 billion or US$3 million on betting via illegal gambling sites. It was learned that it was not the first time that the ex-idol was caught gambling, Dispatch reported.
Court documents show that he was actually apprehended before, he was caught betting money on illegal sites from January to June 2011. Moreover, the prosecution discovered that he was not charged at that time because the ex-idol asked his mother's partner (stepfather) to confess to the offense in his place.
His stepfather did confessed to the crime he did not commit and was slapped with KRW1 million in fine. Then again, even after his stepfather covered up his crime by sacrificing himself, the 32-year-old continued to gamble and at one point even agreed to work as an advertiser for the gambling sites.
"He was caught in 2007 and received a verbal warning from the court. But he didn't stop," Korea Times quoted the court in a ruling statement. "The fact that he asked his mother's lover to make a false confession to avoid prosecution makes a jail sentence unavoidable."
For his part, Jung Jin Woo said that he needed to gamble to earn money in order to keep up with his lifestyle. He added that even though he was a celebrity, he was still in need of cash so he relied on gambling for his needs.
Finally, gambling is prohibited in Korea but the judge handed down a lighter punishment because Jung Jin Woo confessed and deeply reflected on his wrongdoing. The ex-singer got the support of his family and friends so he chose to plead guilty.