Go to Contents Go to Navigation

(LEAD) Nat'l short track speed skaters kicked out of training center over sexual harassment

Sports 17:08 June 25, 2019

(ATTN: ADDS details para 6)

SEOUL, June 25 (Yonhap) -- The entire South Korean short track speed skating team has been expelled from the national training center over a sexual harassment incident involving two male athletes.

According to the Korean Sport & Olympic Committee (KSOC) Tuesday, one male short track speed skater pulled down the pants of a younger male teammate during training while the female skaters were present on June 17 at the Jincheon National Training Center in Jincheon, 90 kilometers south of Seoul. The younger skater reported the incident to his head coach, who in turn informed the Korea Skating Union (KSU) of the situation.

The two male skaters involved were medalists at the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea's PyeongChang.

Shin Chi-yong, head of the training center, decided Monday to keep all 14 skaters on the national team -- seven men and seven women -- out of Jincheon for a month.

This file photo provided by the Korea Skating Union on Jan. 10, 2018, shows South Korean short track speed skaters during training at the Jincheon National Training Center in Jincheon, 90 kilometers south of Seoul. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

The KSOC is reportedly preparing to discuss further measures, based on the findings of the KSU's investigation.

Later Tuesday, the KSU said in a statement that it will hold a disciplinary meeting sometime in July to discuss possible penalty for the skater in question. The KSU added, "This incident goes beyond the two male athletes involved and we feel this is closely associated with the mindset and work ethic of the entire national short track speed skating team and its overall discipline."

The incident is the latest black eye to a sport that has already been marred by unsavory scandals in recent months.

Former national team coach Cho Jae-beom was convicted of physically assaulting Olympic champion Shim Suk-hee in January, and Cho will stand trial on separate charges of sexually assaulting Shim.

In February, male skater Kim Gun-woo was suspended for a month for trespassing in the female dormitory at Jincheon. Kim Ye-jin, a female short tracker who gave Kim Gun-woo an access pass to enter the female-only area, received a reprimand and was ordered to complete 10 hours of community service. Both also lost their national team spots ahead of the world championships in March.


Send Feedback
How can we improve?
Thanks for your feedback!