Korean Models Lured by Photographer Who Raped and Attacked, L.A. Cops Say
UPDATE at 1:08 p.m., Nov. 13: The suspect denies the allegations. See more at the bottom.
A man lured predominantly Korean-speaking women he raped, attacked or tried to assault by promising them modeling jobs, the Los Angeles Police Department officials said last night. In at least one case, he threatened to call federal immigration authorities on a victim because she wasn't complying, they said.
Suspect Jung Park, 41, was arrested Oct. 28 and, even though bail was listed at $100,000, he was released the same day, according to sheriff's inmate data. A police official said he had bailed out and was currently free.
Police publicized the case overnight because they fear other victims could be out there. If they exist, they want them to come forward.
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Authorities told us Jung allegedly used Korean newspapers, websites and radio stations to run help-wanted ads for models or, as an LAPD statement puts it, "body paint models."
That would allow a suspect to ask the women to disrobe, which is allegedly what Jung did. Here's what police say happened on Oct. 26, about 1 p.m., in the case that got him arrested:
... The Suspect, Jung Park, met with the victim after placing an advertisement for body paint models. He asked the victim to disrobe and pose nude for photos. Park then began to inappropriately touch the victim and he attempted to rape her. As she refused his sexual advances, he threatened to report her to Immigration and Naturalization Services.
Park via the LAPD
In its statement, the department uses the terms "rape" and "sexual battery," though it's not clear what, if anything, Park is being formally charged with.
Cops would not tell us exactly how many victims they're associating with their investigation, saying only that there have been "several."
The department echoed that in its statement, saying:
Several victims have come forward and reported similar experiences with Park during photo sessions and interviews at his place of business.
Park is 5 feet, 9 inches, 180 pounds. Police say he ran his ads under a firm called Simple Touch Entertainment. A Facebook page of a similar name lists an address in Koreatown and appears to display posted photos of the suspect.
Anyone who believes they were victimized by him was asked to call detectives (including one who speaks Korean) at 213-473-0447.
UPDATE at 1:08 p.m., Nov. 13: In an interview with Fox 11 News, Park denied the allegations. See what had to say below.
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