Actor Son Seung-won, who asked another actor to take accident blame, gets 4 years' jail over drink-driving

He ran away from the scene of the accident when he crashed his car.

Later, he tried to shift the blame to another person in the incident in Seoul in December 2018.

Now, actor Son Seung-won has been sentenced to four years' jail for drink-driving, after he filed an appeal.

In April, the judge had handed down a 1½-year jail sentence.

According to the police, Son was driving his father's Mercedes-Benz in the early hours of Dec 26, 2018, when he hit another vehicle in front of a cinema.

Son, 29, was caught after he tried to flee from the scene but his path was blocked by taxi drivers.

A check showed that the Welcome To Waikiki actor's driving licence had already been cancelled owing to another incident of drink-driving in August 2018.

The police said Son initially refused to take a breathalyser test and that he claimed that fellow actor Jung Hwi - the other person in Son's car - was the one behind the wheel.

Jung said he was indeed the driver but later made a U-turn.

"He asked me to take the blame because this wasn't his first time violating the traffic laws. It was hard for me to reject his request since he is a senior actor," he told the authorities.

Son later confessed, with other evidence of people seeing him getting out of the driver's seat after the accident, and CCTV footage, pointing to his guilt.

The driver and passenger of the other car involved in the accident sustained injuries.

In court during his appeal hearing, Son pleaded for leniency, saying: "If I am forgiven, I will continue to live and work as a volunteer to serve the community."

The news of the sentencing was welcomed by netizens who feel that drink-driving is a serious problem in South Korea, and that Son was irresponsible, given that the Dec 26 incident was his fourth drink-driving case.

Others noted that Son could have got into worse trouble if the crash had claimed lives while others lambasted him for appealing against his April sentence.

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.