SEOUL (AFP) - Choi Siwon, a member of popular K-pop boy band Super Junior, on Saturday (Oct 21) apologised over the death of a renowned restaurateur who died after being attacked by his family's pet dog.
The 53-year-old woman, surnamed Kim, who ran a famous Korean restaurant Hanilkwan in Seoul, died in hospital of blood poisoning on Oct 3, days after she was bitten by a French bull dog raised by the Chois.
The dog, untied, was out on a walk with Choi's father when it attacked Kim, a neighbour.
The victim's older sister, who is a co-CEO of Hanilkwan, later spoke up about the death of her sister, according to Korean pop culture website Soompi.
“It’s true that my sister passed away from a secondary infection, along with some other complications, after getting bitten by their dog. However, we decided to forgive them because we were close as neighbours, and loathing them will not bring my sister back.
“My sister’s son and I want to mourn her passing quietly. We don’t plan on taking any legal action against (Choi Siwon’s) family. We don’t want to be compensated. My sister’s son is actually around the same age as Choi Siwon. They’re both young. It’s tragic that my sister passed away, but I don’t want to (ruin) the lives of these young people.”
“Choi Siwon visited our family several times to apologise. He even cried at the funeral. I held onto his two hands and forgave him,” she added.
The boy band star wrote on his Instagram account: "I lower my head and apologise to the bereaved family... and convey my deep condolences."
"As a member of the family raising the dog, I feel greatly responsible", said the 31-year-old.
His belated apology sparked online attacks, saying that his apology was not sincere.
In the face of the criticism, he removed photographs of himself cuddling the dog, named Buxy, from his Instagram account.