An individual who accused Korean actor Jo Byung-gyu of being a bully in school has apologized to the star.
In February, online posts surfaced making claims of school violence allegedly perpetrated by Jo Byung-gyu, who starred in the hit Korean drama “The Uncanny Counter,” which ended its run last January.
One accused him of bullying while they were in high school in New Zealand. The accuser said the actor picked on him.
“Jo didn’t use physical violence. There was only verbal violence. The only thing I want from writing this is an acknowledgement that school violence occurred and a sincere apology,” the accuser wrote, according to Korea JoongAng Daily.
The actor’s agency, HB Entertainment, announced on July 27 that “we took legal action against those who wrote posts which sparked a baseless bullying controversy. During a police investigation, the accuser admitted that his post was a fabrication and recently sent us an apology letter.”
To back up his innocence, Jo Byung-gyu submitted statements and testimonies from teachers and alumni, and student records to the police.
HB Entertainment said about a post written by someone with foreign nationality, the suspect has been identified through police investigation, and legal proceedings will follow when the suspect enters Korea.
“We will continue to actively respond to baseless posts and malicious comments,” the agency added.
Jo Byung-gyu’s career came to a halt because of the bullying accusations. In an Instagram post on Feb. 23, he denied the allegations.
“I was so dumbfounded when the first allegation came up, because I was wrongly accused. Posts with malicious intentions [accusing me of bullying] have been made, and I’m shocked that they are perceived to be true just because they include random photos and accusations,” he wrote, Korea JoongAng Daily reported.
“Due to untrue claims and rebuttals on the internet, I have become skeptical and disillusioned with the 26 years of my life. I was a playful, happy-go-lucky student who dreamed of becoming a soccer player. I didn’t get along with every classmate, just like any other person, but I have never assaulted or stolen from anyone,” he added.
He said, “I don’t know why I have to defend myself every time I become a target of a volatile accusation. I can’t bear getting accused of things I did not do because of a few photos and words.”