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Maestro Chung summoned over defamation charges

All News 11:56 July 14, 2016

SEOUL, July 14 (Yonhap) -- Maestro Chung Myung-whun was summoned by prosecutors Thursday to face questioning over a recent rumor scandal around a former chief of the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra (SPO).

"I believed what my colleagues, who I worked with for 10 years, said," the conductor told reporters before entering the Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office in southern Seoul. "There needs to be a thorough investigation so a conclusion can be reached and that is why I came here today."

The 63-year-old maestro is locked in a legal battle with Park Hyun-jung, the ex-CEO of the orchestra, who quit earlier in March over alleged sexual and verbal harassment she committed on some members of the orchestra in 2014.

The case came to light as 10 employees at the orchestra filed a complaint with police against Park in December.

Police, however, concluded in March that Chung's wife, 67, identified only by her surname Koo, is suspected of ordering Chung's secretary to spread the rumors. Koo, known to be in France, is flatly denying the charges.

Following the police announcement, the 54-year-old Park filed a petition with the prosecution, seeking investigation into Chung over libel charges.

Chung also filed a counterclaim against Park on charges of defamation and false accusation.

Prosecutors said they will question Chung over whether there was proof that Park actually harassed the employees.

Amid the legal wrangling, the maestro resigned as the orchestra's music director after a decade of service at the end of last year.

Chung will undergo a separate police probe into his alleged embezzlement charges on Friday.


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