Park Chan Jong, “The Charge ‘Manipulative Fraud’ is Applicable to the SM-Dong Bang Shin Ki Case”
“Even a third party can report it…must take this opportunity to eradicate slave contracts”
by CBS Political dept. Reporter Lee Jae Jun
August 4, 2009-Minerva’ [Translator’s note: Minerva is a famous/infamous Korean blogger whose accurate political and economic analyses and predictions unsettled even the Korean government], chairman Park Yeong Chan and former Member-of-Parliament (MP) Park Chan Jong [Translator’s note: Park Chan Jong is a famous human rights lawyer and former MP], who likes to think of himself as a legal representative in the thickening case involving Dong Bang Shin Ki, decided to speak out on the issue on the 4th.
Representing upright and conscientious people,’ they stated their position through a press release, “It is clear as day that the contract Dong Bang Shin Ki signed with SM is a ‘slave contract'” and “SM’s actions in pursuit of unjust enrichment are tantamount to a penal offense as well as manipulative fraud.”
MP Park Chan Jong in particular emphasised that the fact the members of Dong Bang Shin Ki were compelled to sign ‘a 13-year contract’ as minors qualifies this as a criminal offense on grounds of ‘manipulative fraud.’
According to Article 348 paragraph 1 of the Penal Code, ‘manipulative fraud’ is the abuse of a minor’s ‘naïveté’ and/or mental or physical disorder to gain personal or property interests; a person convicted under the charge of manipulative fraud will face a prison sentence of 10 years and a fine of roughly 20,000 USD.
Ergo, it can be said that SM used to their advantage the ‘naïveté’ (lack of objective judgment and discernment) of the Dong Bang Shin Ki members to burden them noticeably disadvantageous contract.
MP Park took note of the following:
- The contract virtually ties down the entertainer to a lifetime employment
- The penalty for breach of contract includes double the amount the celebrity would have earned in the remaining years of the contract
- The original contract was not confirmed by the contracted party
- Only after [Dong Bang Shin Ki] sells 500,000 albums do they receive a salary of 10,000 USD each, an arrangement qualifiable as unfair
In light of these facts, [MP Park stated], “SM’s criminal actions can be reported not only by Dong Bang Shin Ki, the party directly impacted, but also by any other third party,” and “we must take this opportunity to eradicate slave contracts between entertainers and their management companies.”