Not Paris Hilton, for sure, but who is this gal?

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Not Paris Hilton, for sure, but who is this gal?

A wealthy 24-year-old woman who showed off her luxury handbags and accessories on a TV program, supposedly purchased with her allowance from her parents, provoked public anger and demands for a tax probe, but investigators said that most of what was aired was exaggerated and possibly fake.

Mnet, one of Korea’s cable channels, aired a program called “Tent in the City,” introducing the luxury life of a woman surnamed Kim, who displayed a series of name-brand bags in her room and wore fine jewelry such as a diamond necklace worth 200 million won ($171,673).

“I have no job and all the stuff is bought by my parents,” she bragged on the show. “Clothes and accessories that I am wearing now cost more than 400 million won in total.”

She claimed that the most expensive present she received from her parents was a pink sports car famous for being the same one Paris Hilton has, according to the program.

After the show, the National Tax Service received more than 200 postings on its Web site, asking for a probe of her parents, who, they surmised, must have committed tax evasion on their daughter’s gifts. Current tax law imposes a gift tax on items worth more than 30 million won when given to children older than 20.

“After we find out whether what she said is true, we will conduct a tax probe into the family if necessary,” the chief of the tax service said.

But investigators found out that most of the show was not true. Her parents are not so rich to lavish hundreds of thousands of won in allowance to her, and there is no official record of the pink car in Kim’s name.

Her marital status is also in question. Investigators said she is not single, as she said, but married.

Her pride and joy diamond necklace, exclusively made in the shape of the Japanese brand character “Hello Kitty,” proved to be worth less than 40 million won, not 200 million as she argued, according to the necklace maker. The maker has accused Kim of delayed payment for the necklace. Investigators suspect that the producers might have fabricated her life because her friends said that Kim just “read” the script that producers had prepared.

“We have never asked her to ‘read’ the script,” said Min Jeong-sik, executive producer. “We are now waiting for Kim’s return to Korea from Japan.”

“We are now inspecting the program to find out if there is any illicit content against broadcasting provisions,” said an official at the Korea Communications Standards Commission. “The result of the inspection will come out early next week.”


By Shim Sae-rom [heejin@joongang.co.kr]

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