MBC has interviewed alleged the victims of Ji Soo's bullying. At least six victims spoke to the channel's True Expedition Team. Soompi elaborately reported what the victims had to say about Ji Soo. The victims appeared wearing masks and their identities were not revealed. Actor Ji Soo, who is on a break now, has responded to these claims and issued a clarification.
First let us check out what the alleged victims had said. The first person said that Ji Soo set time and forced him to buy food for him from the school cafeteria. He said that most of the times Ji Soo would not even pay for it. He also said that Ji Soo would demand money from him. He had started with $4 and then even went up demanding $88 from him. Ji Soo is said to have made him take his exams and quizzes.
Ji Soo Recruited by School Delinquents
The second person said that Ji Soo would kick his butt and thighs, strike on his head, slap his face and punch him in the chest or in the pit of his stomach. If he failed to carry out the missions given by Ji Soo, like dancing in between the class etc, he would hit him. He said that Ji Soo used him like a shield to sleep in the class.
Speaking to the True Expedition Team, one of Ji Soo's classmates said that they ate cup noodles behind a TV during lunch hour because they were scared of running into Ji Soo in the cafeteria. The other two classmates had said that Ji Soo was a class bully in his first year and then he started exercising more power after he was recruited by a group of school delinquents.
'All Allegations Against Ji Soo Are Not true'
However, one classmate refuted the claims of sexual harassment. He said that Ji Soo wouldn't do something like that. But he said that he was a perpetrator of school violence and said that the actor should be punished for what he had done and not for what he was not a part of. He also said that he knows the initial accuser. "The kid who was the top bully in his first and second year suddenly became an outcast in his third year. He's putting the blame on Kim Ji Soo for a lot of things that other kids did to him," he said.
After the program was aired, Ji Soo's agency issued a statement and said: "In addition to his official letter of apology, Ji Soo is resolving the issue by continuously apologizing and asking for forgiveness from the victims he has gotten in touch with."
Ji Soo Issues Clarification
Ji Soo also issued clarification regarding the claims made. "During my school days, I hung out with a group of delinquents and foolishly lived in the illusion that I had great power in my hands. However, claims that I ostracized classmates, forced them to buy things, made them take my tests, and sexually harassed or assaulted them are absolutely not true. If you give me the chance, I would like to genuinely apologize to those who were hurt by my actions," Ji Soo said.
The MBC crew even visited parents of the alleged victims and one of the parents said that she would switch channels whenever she saw Ji Soo on screen. She referred to him as b***ard. Mother of another victim said that once she went to speak to principal against Ji Soo bullying her child. She was shocked to hear the principal ask if the students did not have anything better to do [than complaining]. MBC crew also visited Ji Soo's middle school but the personnel there said that those who had taught Ji Soo were currently not working in the school.
This controversy cost Ji Soo his career and he was asked to quit the ongoing drama, River Where The Moon Rises. His agency has announced that Ji Soo will enlist for military service in October, this year.