K-pop idol denies rape accusation, his label vows stern action

SEOUL (THE KOREA HERALD/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - A day after a member of K-pop band Zest was sued for allegedly raping a woman in her 20s, his label vowed stern action on Friday against the woman's "false accusation".

"We have a recording of her remarks stating she pressured our company only because the accused is an idol," an official said, pledging to reveal the recording unless the woman stops making false accusations.

"The woman who claims to have been raped is also an idol. But she is not on the K-pop scene right now," said an official from Zest's label Zenith Media Contents.

The label said the two met a few times on good terms, but rape could never have happened.

In late February, the woman in her 20s, believed to be a member of a K-pop group, filed a complaint against the teenage Zest member, who is five years younger than her, accusing him of sexually assaulting her.

The news went viral on Thursday after local media outlets reported the woman's claims.

According to the woman, the male idol, whose name was not revealed, met her through a friend in November last year and raped her. He went to her house to apologise, but attempted to rape her again six days later, she said.

The idol's father had warned her through a text message to settle the issue, saying he would sue her for defamation, according to the reports.

Following the reports, the idol's label dismissed the accusation as "groundless", saying it also filed a complaint against the woman for spreading "false information".

His parents had already filed a complaint against her for defaming the singer before she sued him, the agency said.

"The member of Zest never raped her. She made up the story and posted it online to blackmail him," said the label. "If it was really a rape, she would have sued him when it happened. We believe that she is up to something by abruptly taking legal action."

The plaintiff has made her statement to the police and the accused will soon be called for an investigation.