I’m honestly a little surprised that I haven’t seen more on this – both in English and Korean.
In all fairness, it’s likely that many of Yoo’s contacts had no knowledge of the deep and tangled inner dealings of his companies. Con artists like Yoo are pros at deception.
Jin Young Park (JYP), the founder of JYP Entertainment, is indirectly related to Yoo Byeong-Eon, Korea’s Most Wanted Man. Turns out his wife (whom he married last year) is Yoo’s niece. So that makes him Yoo’s nephew-in-law.
The most recent article I found about JYP’s connection with Yoo Byeong-Eon was from May 27, 2014 which basically says “What is the extent of Yoo Byeong-Eon’s ‘golden contacts’?” It’s difficult for me to fully translate the article at my current Korean ability, but the following seems like the most relevant piece to this JYP connection:
지금까지 알려진 유 전 회장의 인맥은 광범위하다. JTBC는 지난 13일 유 전 회장의 황금 인맥을 중점적으로 보도하기도 했다. 매체에 따르면 지난해 열린 유 전회장의 출판기념회에는 성 김 주한 미국 대사를 비롯해이스라엘 대사 등 여러 나라의 대사가 참석했다. 유 전 회장의 조카사위 박진영 JYP엔터테인먼트 대표도카메라에 잡혔다. 유 전 회장 인맥이 외교계, 재계, 종교계, 문화계를 넘나들고 있는 것이다.
Until now, the known networks of ferry owner Yoo are extensive. Last week on the 13th, JTBC News focused a report on Yoo’s “golden contacts.” According to various media sources, last year Yoo opened a publication anniversary event which U.S. ambassador Sung Kim as well as the Israeli ambassador and ambassadors from various other countries attended. Representatives from Yoo’s nephew-in-law’s JYP Entertainment were also caught on camera. Yoo’s networking contacts appear to include foreign, business, religious, and cultural figures.
The image associated with this news article is also quite interesting as the heading on the news story reads: “Officials and Prosecutors also showed off their friendship with Yoo”
But THIS IMAGE is even more interested – as it shows JYP (circled) in attendance during Yoo’s presentation:
JYP Entertainment under investigation
A related news story (April 30, 2014) says that JYP Entertainment is now being investigated and having its accounts tracked by the FSS (Financial Supervisor Service) for any relevant link to the Salvation Sect.
This article from KpopStarz Singapore gives a breakdown of the investigation so far. (It appears to cover the same story I found in Korean):
Based on the reports, the suspicions about the unlawful fund transfers to JYP Entertainment came to light after millions of Korean won were traced in the agency’s bank account. At close inspection, it was discovered that the money was deposited by Yoo Byeong Eon’s younger brother.
Moreover, all of Yoo Byeong Eon’s children are the highest shareholders in Trigon Korea (his eldest son is the largest shareholder), an engineering company that is also being investigated for illegal financial activities.
Trigon Korea was said to have received donations (or loans) for the Sewol rescue operations, however the collected funds were allegedly misused and never made it to where they were supposed to go.
The relief funds that the company collected were estimated to be around KRW 5.8 billion. The breakdown of the funds received is as follows:
- 2.9 billion (from ‘Credit Union N’)
- 1.5 billion (from ‘Credit Union H’)
- 1.4 billion (from ‘Credit Union I’)
Nonetheless, Park Jin Young vehemently denied that there were funds transferred to their company or that they were in any way connected to Yoo Byeong Eon. (More on this below)
A Tangled Web
Here’s an look at the tangled web of companies and affiliates that Yoo and his two sons are involved with.
The following are two articles that look more closely at Yoo’s connections:
- Scandalous owner family of Sewol (from which the above image comes)
- Who controls Semo Group?
- Sects, money, and tragedy have history in Korea (a long and in-depth look at how cults milk their followers for as much money as possible)
The third article above also references a “Yoo Byeong-Eon List” – which names people who have been photographed with the suspect. The earlier article that mentions JYP’s connection with Yoo references an “Ahae List” (아해 리스트) that was recently confiscated from the cult’s compound:
검찰은 최근 금수원 압수수색 과정에서 유 전 회장 일가의 정ㆍ관계 인맥이 담긴 이른바 ‘아해 리스트’를 압수한 것으로 알려졌다. 이 리스트에는 유 전 회장 일가의 행사에 참석한 인사들의 명단과 이들에게 전해준 선물이나 금품 내역이 포함돼 있는 것으로 전해졌다. 그간 검찰은 유 전 회장 일가의 비리를 수사하면서 ‘비호 세력’ 언급을 한 바 있다. 검찰은 ‘아해 리스트’가 유 전 회장 일가의 비리 의혹을 상당부분 밝혀 줄 것으로 기대하고 있다.
The prosecution’s latest search of the Geumsuwon compound resulted in the confiscation of a so-called “Ahae List” that contains information and relationships in Yoo’s network. This list contains the events and names of those who the family carried gifts or gratuities to. As the prosecution investigates the corruption of the family, any “unfavorable influences” will be referred to the bar. The “Ahae List” is expected to reveal a great deal of corruption allegations of the Yoo family.
JYP’s Denial of Receiving Funds
After rumors of his connection to Yoo Byeong-Eon surfaced, Jin Young Park (JYP) tweeted his vehement denial of any connection – apart from being married to Yoo’s niece – with the corruption:
Translation (referenced on this site):
Other than the fact that my wife is related to the company in question, there is no other connection. Is this a country where you can write anything you want?
My religious position will be clear if you listen to any of my interviews or the music I have released. I have studied many religions over the past few years, but I still don’t have a religion.
I hope groundless rumors will stop spreading.
JYP Entertainment has said that it will seek legal action against those who spread the rumors, and released the following statement:
박진영 대표의 부인이 유병언 전 회장의 조카인 것은 맞다… 박진영 대표는 무교… 본사는 아무런 근거 없는 회사의 불법자금 유입설에 대해 단돈 10원이라도 불법적인 자금이 유입된 사실이 없다는 점을 분명히 밝혀드린다.
It is true that Park Jin Young’s wife is the niece of the former chairman Yoo Byeong Eon. However, Park Jin Young is not religious, and the agency has never received any illegal funds, not even 10 KRW.
Here are three related articles (Korean):
And a good one in English:
- JYP FORCED TO CLARIFY THAT HE ISN’T FINANCIALLY IN BED WITH SEWOL FERRY COMPANY, NOR A RELIGIOUS CULT
국제영상 (International Video) also under investigation
Financial authorities have also begun investigations into Guk Je Yeong Sang, of which TV actor Mr. Jun, Trigon Korea’s largest shareholder, is the chairman. The investigation is in regards to suspicions that a mortgage of two billion KRW (approx. 1.9 million USD) taken out on the Guk Je Yeong Sang building was then routed to the Yoo family’s personal accounts.
On Trigon’s real estate holdings
- 유병언 관계사 트라이곤 600억대 오피스텔 실소유
- [단독]유병언 장남회사 트라이곤, 600억 오피스텔사업
- (Pre-Trigon real estate) Real estate deals between Yoo, son may have broken bankruptcy laws
On JYP’s account tracking investigation and connection to Yoo
- 세모그룹 유병언, 주한 미국 대사부터 박진영까지…’황금인맥’ 자랑
- 금감원, ‘구원파’관련 국제영상·박진영 JYP엔터테인먼트 계좌추적 실시
- 금감원, JYP·국제영상 계좌추적… 트라이곤코리아 자금 유입?
- 박진영, 세모그룹 제품 애용? 구원파와 관련 없다더니…