Choi Hyun-seok was also hackedChef Choi Hyun-seok, famous for his appearance on the JTBC show “Please Take Care of My Refrigerator,” is one of the dozen or so actors and celebrities whose phones were hacked earlier this month, independent news outlet Dispatch reported on Friday.
Actor Joo Jin-mo was revealed earlier this month to also have been a victim.
Both have been embroiled in scandals as their hacked text messages were leaked to digital media outlets and social media.
Dispatch reported that when someone hacked into Choi’s phone and blackmailed him last May, Choi was concerned that the leaked information would jeopardize his contract with his agency at the time.
Choi then allegedly decided to end the contract early and sign another one with another agency, instead of waiting to be cut from his previous company. In the process, Choi is alleged to have forged his contract with the former agency to end it earlier than agreed (the contract was set to expire in 2025) without facing consequences.
His agency has not issued an official statement regarding the allegation.
News broke earlier this month about 10 top stars, including K-pop group members and actors, as well as Joo, have been intimidated by unidentified hackers.
The blackmailers allegedly demanded money or valuables worth up to 1 billion won ($860,000) in return for not revealing the celebrities’ personal information, including mobile messages, videos and photos. Some of the victims handed over the money, while others who refused to give money saw their private text messages released to the public.
Police on Jan. 9 launched an investigation into the allegations.
One of these victims was Joo, but netizens soon turned against him after some of his leaked texts used raunchy words when referring to women. Joo has since then issued an apology.
By Esther Chung, Yonhap