52 Responses to “Foreign Teacher Raped in Seoul; Cigarette Butt Leads to Arrest”

  1. former teacher / 7 Jun 2013 2:04pm #

    If Koreans in general would stop assuming that people over 30, those who are overweight or have what they consider are physical flaws, are “bad teachers” without giving us a chance, then maybe we Westerners would be more willing to stop assuming Koreans are insecure, neurotic-about-appearance xenophobic, racist idiots.

    • Michele / 7 Jun 2013 4:30pm #

      Being over 30 is an advantage if you go for a university job.

  2. jojojojojojojo / 7 Jun 2013 2:06pm #

    What the heck is your article? Are you like a middle-school student? “The immediate reaction among foreigners will likely be hate”… Seriously??? I recommend you to stop writing articles/blogs and get back to school (dont know where you should start though)………………

    • edkadmin / 7 Jun 2013 4:01pm #

      Upon review, I think you’re right. ‘Hate’ may be too strong of a word. ‘Upset’ could be more appropriate. Nevertheless, the fueling of hate/upset was not the main point, as much as trying to curb the kneejerk reaction for foreigners to form broad opinions against Koreans, but in the same breath, to use this kind of article to urge Koreans to restrain from forming broad opinions about foreigners, whenever negative foreigner news breaks. I’d like to think that the expat community can rise above and lead by example that we don’t need to typecast all Koreans based on one guy’s actions. And maybe some Koreans can follow that positive example, next time the news casts us in a poor light.

    • gloverquin / 8 Jun 2013 1:55am #

      haha ~ jojojojo is so right. don’t your day job, oh wait, you probably already did.

      • edkadmin / 8 Jun 2013 4:36am #

        “don’t your day job.” 마지막 문장을 모르겠습니다.

    • edkadmin / 8 Jun 2013 8:13am #

      Also, these comments and glover’s comments have a right to be here, if you feel that they reflect your views. There’s no need to hide behind fake gmail addresses that you and glover used, over fear that anyone is going to want to find you and beat you up over anything you said, because the comments weren’t really that nasty. Anyways, feel free to post your opinions without worry, like the rest of the blog commenters here.

  3. Glenn / 7 Jun 2013 2:23pm #

    If males in general should not be demonized, one wonders why in Korean society mostly females are preferred to be employed in kindergartens, academies, and elementary schools. My wife visited an academy where the director wants to get rid of the only foreign male teacher, and replace him with a foreign female. Males have a lot to do with this tendency of employment; with the general consensus of bad male behavior in the world, unfortunately the ‘well-behaved’ males suffer due to the uncontrolled behavior of delinquent males. Just last night I watched a documentary where the view was expressed that 90% of crimes committed to females and others, were caused by males.

    But, be what it may, there are certain rules that you have to follow as a female here in Korea, 1. it is best to be at home from 8 pm onward, as after this loiterers and troublemakers seem to be in abundance, and their boldness increases as they become more inebriated, 2. try to, always, have a companion with you, 3. avoid alleyways and dark streets – especially after dark, 4. avoid bars as far as possible, 5. always have your apartments’ door locked, and have camera security system installed at your front door – if you don’t have one already, 6. do not get involved in any pointless arguments with Koreans – in the end their viewpoint is chosen above yours, even if there were bystanders or police officials, 7. always dress appropriately – Korean males associate that which they see in American media with the females they meet. They believe if you are dressed scantily that this amounts to an invitation.

    • Sydney / 8 Jun 2013 8:16am #

      This is silly. These strictures may exist if you are very young and appealing, but really, they exist where you come from too. That would be US and Canada and Australia, etc. Every female is wary and somewhat watchful. Then again, Korea is remarkably safe and I should know. I spent 10+ years there living in various cities, had a great job, a car and made a living. Even at the worst…during stress and crisis, I was able to run in the middle of the night. Sure would not do that here in Canada. So…all of this is kind of moot. As to judgments by Koreans, there are good and there are bad. Somehow once you have gone through the “sifting” process you are okay, even if you are sometimes just passable, and Koreans will vouch for you far beyond anything I have ever seen in Canada, Australia, Europe or the US. So, Korea is normal…flawed, amazing, crap and wonderful…just like most places. Best to stop painting with a broad brush. Where it is silly, is that after years of allowing every Tom, Dick and Harry into Korea, one crappy person made the government of Korea crack right down on everyone, at great cost and hardship. That left excellent teachers who had a good long track record (mostly but not all, male) with no future there, the cost is horrendous and the paper blizzard has been ratched up to beyond belief. Too bad.

    • Sean / 8 Jun 2013 1:44pm #

      I’m sorry, but that is a very naive, if not blatantly offensive, response to rape. It smacks of middle age WASP-ishness.

      Women should have the legal, social and political freedom to dress as they feel comfortable or go to bars (alone or otherwise) and still be safe from misogynist rapists. WTF does ‘dress appropriately’ even mean. Appropriate for the wearer or the eyes of a pervert? Women wearing jeans and jumpers get raped you foolish man.

      There are NO rules that you have to follow as a female in Korea. There are guidelines to being safe in any country in the world and Korea is among the safest of any. The only rules needed are those that severely punish men who prey on women in any form, from stalking to rape.

  4. harpoinseoul1 / 7 Jun 2013 2:28pm #

    “Foreigners in Korea, in general, know that Korea is among the most safest countries in the world, and the actions of one Korean man should not change the larger image.”

    I’m wondering where you get this safe image from? As a counselor who works in the English speaking community, sexual assault happens quite frequently.I, along with other counselors get calls constantly. I counsel women who have been beaten, roofied, raped, stalked, jeered at, etc. by Korean (as well as international) men. There is nothing safe about living in Seoul. Just because crime is hardly ever reported in the news does not mean that it is not happening. Be safe, everyone!


    • Sydney / 8 Jun 2013 8:23am #

      —and this does not happen where you come from? I live in Canada and it happens here. The only sexual assault I ever had to deal with was of a young, naive female teacher who was roofied by North American male teachers. Yup! I was mad about that. Thought it was bad enough.

      The real problem was that the doctor(s) who dealt with her BLAMED her and also mistreated her. That is institutional abuse, not individual abuse. I was willing to go to court with her and deal with it (am an old female) but she opted to keep it secret, which is also her right. Still…the doctors…so disappointing. As to the foreign teacher, the teaching community dealt with them. They were quietly warned to not renew their contracts and go home…and authorities in their home cities were notified (unofficially). What more would you have happen?

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    • Anonymous / 14 Oct 2014 10:22pm #

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  5. Myvanwy Birds / 7 Jun 2013 2:30pm #

    you were more worried about what people think about korean men, rather than the victim.. besides how come he was still free after being charged guilty many other times? True to say sexual crimes in Korea are still not punished properly.

  6. American in Korea / 7 Jun 2013 3:07pm #

    Korean men are outstanding gentleman. They are famous for their respectfulness and understanding towards women, both Korean and foreign.

    The actions of one Korean man should not be used to reflect on the rest of the men in Korea. All of my friends who have dated Korean men say they are some of the most respectful and kindest men in the world who would never even THINK of doing this kind of thing!!!

    • Dave / 7 Jun 2013 4:55pm #

      Yes, Korean men are often gentlemanly… but the rate of domestic abuse here suggests (strongly) that there’s another side and your knee-jerk disagreement is just the sort of thing that kept a lid on domestic violence in the West for so long.

    • Liz / 10 Jun 2013 1:03pm #

      Dear American in Korea,
      “They are famous for their respectfulness and understanding towards women, both Korean and foreign.” is absolutely not true. Korean men (not all of course) are actually famous for being quite the opposite. Spousal abuse and patriarchal dominance are somethings you hear about everyday.

      Maybe they have some understanding of their “own kind”, but I can promise you from loads of experience that many of them don’t understand foreign women and consider them to be nothing but meat. Foreign women are leered at and rude comments follow many times. Korean women dress more provocatively than Foreign girls I have seen, yet many Korean men consider foreign girls as sex-crazed who will put out for a mere meal due to movies. This is such naive thinking on their part. Also when you visit other Asian countries, some people will tell you how Korean men get the local women pregnant and then leave without remorse. Its also speculated (Koreatimes article) that Korean men drive child prostitution in South-east Asia as you can find many pamphlets advertising such in Hangeul (as they do in English too I’m sure.

      As with all people in the world – I have met some really nice gentlemanly Korean men, but ask most Foreign girls in Korea and we will all tell you that Korean guys generally have a bad reputation when it comes to us. I have been asked straight-up for sex, I have been wined and dined for sex, I have been “language exchanged” for sex, I have even been jumped on in a car while on an innocent date, I have been grabbed at, I have been begged, I have been insulted etc etc… And the oddest thing of all, when you say no, when you refuse, then they cannot understand why and blame you for being conservative… In my experience western guys don’t pressure for sex like Korean men do.

      So next time you make such a statement, please ask many foreign girls around you. You have bad apples in any culture.

      • Dot / 11 Jun 2013 2:00pm #

        Thanks, I was the lone one to think that some are delusional about REAL Korean men.

      • Eunju / 24 Jun 2013 9:06pm #

        Dear Liz
        That’s true but I have had same citation from American. Canadian,British,Australian..etc But I got married with Canadian. Haha beacuse he is good man 🙂 I think it’s the same thing in the world. It doen’t matter for nationalty. Good people and Bad people are live together. I’m sorry if I make you upset beacuse of my comment. Also my poor English.

    • Benjamin / 21 Jun 2013 8:33am #

      Holy crap. Has no one heard of sarcasm?

    • Adam / 16 Mar 2014 1:01pm #

      This is profoundly untrue. Korean men are famous for beating their wives and having sex with minors in the Philippines. However, I suspect the poster was joking considering his icon is the “scumbag hat”.

  7. SGL / 7 Jun 2013 3:13pm #

    The opinion after the article seemed overly apologetic. Koreans know all too well what some other Koreans and non-Koreans are like. The bright side is that a Korean policeman followed up and identified the perp with the help of a local crime lab.

  8. Michael Aronson / 7 Jun 2013 4:04pm #

    I’m kind of saddened that all the comments so far express one generalization or another.

    (And now so does mine.)

  9. Josh Daniel / 7 Jun 2013 4:30pm #

    Very good post.
    No place on earth is safe, and these crimes will never stop. But, Korea is peaceful Country to live. Hope this would not happen again in Korea or anywhere else.

  10. Mark Gomez / 7 Jun 2013 5:18pm #

    I think an interesting and eyebrow raising point here is the fact that the policeman did his job and did it well. It is not often that the police are painted in a good light in Korea.

  11. Smith / 7 Jun 2013 7:18pm #

    Deepest condolences to the victim and glad the perpetrator was caught. But don’t start judging korean men because of a few bad apples. MOST korean men are very gentlemanly, respectable, hard-working, honest, kind men. There are always bad apples in every society, but it seems like whenever a korean does something bad, it’s a great opportunity to judge and attack koreans as being racist, or backwards, or whatever. Count the number of foreigner women raped in Korea…and we’re not talking about mail-order brides from south east asia. There’s only a HANDFUL. Now let’s go to the UK and count the number of MUSLIM males (mainly pakistani) who have raped white british girls…mostly aged 11 to 14. There are 2,400 cases in the past few years. So if you want to go pick a fight, go and do some research and like “muslim rape wave” or “jihad rape” and you’ll find the thousands of young white girls (mainly) that are targeted and raped by radical muslim males….it’s astonishing and the news has been relatively kept quiet until recently with the woolwich beheading….people are starting to realize how big the problem is now and are finally waking up. Do the research, it’s all there or go to http://muslimrapewave.wordpress.com to see all the latest updates and info about the rape cases happening almost DAILY.

  12. Louise / 8 Jun 2013 12:40pm #

    Hi there,
    The focus should be on the victim-agreed.
    A better balance of published news stories involving foreign nationals living here in Korea needs to be struck-agreed. You were right to raise the notion that an American student running naked through the streets is much less newsworthy than this poor woman being attacked. This imbalance seemingly created by xenophobia will probably continue to feed xenophobia. Moreover, Korean students probably get up to this sort of thing as well, yet this probably goes unreported.
    You don’t need to apologize- I find your views well-balanced, well-argued and very fair.
    We need assistance from Korean society as whole to improve this kind of reporting and to change perceptions-agreed. A large group of us contacting some kind of relevant organization or government department loudly and often could be a good start.
    For those who think Korea is safe for women compared with their own country…I can only account for Korea vs UK.
    Yes, women are attacked in every country. However, in terms of sexual harassment, I feel much safer back in the UK (which is why myself and my husband tried to make a life there, but the recession prevented that…long story). Here in Korea I am leered at on a daily basis, in front of my husband or alone, at the supermarket, at the park, on the train or bus or on the street…all in broad daylight, and I am not scantily clad nor exceptionally attractive. I have also been followed, touched and attacked. It’s a wonder I bother leaving the apartment at all.
    People, especially male co-workers or acquaintances often rubbish my experiences, saying that I am paranoid. I have witnesses (husband and other friends), so I can assure you, I most definitely am not. Moreover, every female non-Korean I have met here has a story about their own experience or a friend’s experience of being followed, touched or worse.
    This level of leering and other forms of sexual harassment has never happened to me in the UK. The only time I have ever been leered at in the same manner is in a pub or in a club where people go to ”pull” anyway, so rightly or wrongly it is a somewhat socially acceptable place to leer. I am sure many women in Korea can agree that their experiences here vs back home are similar to my own.

  13. big seoul / 8 Jun 2013 7:55pm #

    I know this victim and the whole story about what happened. I have been in Korea for 8 years and have seen this type of thing get blown over in favor of other stories. I don’t think it’s right but there’s little we can do. One thing we can do is support “Seoul Survivor Services”. This service is a new organization for foreign women who have been raped or assaulted and need help in English. On 6/15 at Dojo lounge in Kyungridan (below Noxa) we will be holding a fundraiser for them. Starts at 10pm. We’ll have drink specials, raffle prizes, live music and Djs. It’s a 10,000 won cover and all the proceeds go to Seoul Survivor Services. Please stop down next saturday and really show support for the victim and the many victims of these horrific crimes. It’s a small step, but an important one in bringing awareness to this service. You can check out http://www.facebook.com/thebigseoulpartyproject for more info. an event will be posted tonight or tomorrow. But please do stop down. have some fun and show that the foreign community is truly a great community helping others both Korean and foreign. All the best. and thank you

  14. big seoul / 8 Jun 2013 8:00pm #

    here is the Seoul Survivor Services website and facebook page. Spread the word. Cheers



  15. big seoul / 9 Jun 2013 10:50pm #

    here is the event page on Facebook

    anyone and everyone is invited. gonna be a great time for a great cause.

  16. hiddenflask / 10 Jun 2013 12:30pm #

    I guess the reason this isn’t big news and someone running naked in the streets is, is because something like 42 rapes happen every day on average in Korea and people running naked in the streets happens almost never. Foreigners are also a minor percentage of the overall population. While it’s sad, I don’t think we can expect to be in the news because of rape when many many more Korean rapes go unnoticed day in and day out. The problem is in how seriously people take rape, not how seriously people take foreigners.

  17. AdamRidley / 10 Jun 2013 5:19pm #

    Yes it is out of the ordinary for a rape to be in the news at all. Do rapes make it into the paper in our own countries unless they are particularly gruesome or of the very young/old? Would we have it in the news because the victim was Korean? It was only newsworthy at all here because it was a foreigner.

    Why do some expats want to be a victim and find racism.. Korea is racist.. in some ways they hold us white people over themselves even, so lol they are racist to themselves even haha.. if you are overweight or old then think yourself lucky and thank your lol white privilege that you can even have a decent job in this country where looks mean so much.

  18. Angela / 10 Jun 2013 8:01pm #

    What I am about to post is going to really piss of a lot of people, but I will go forth. I also feel I can say it, because I was a rape crisis counselor in the states.

    Rape is never right regardless of the victims behavior or demeanor. However, the majority of foreign women I come across here in Korea – need to get their shit together and act like ladies. What do you think is going to happen at 3am when your so blasted drunk from mixing alcohol? Just because Korea has a “nice” fa?ade going for them doesn’t give you license to completely disown personal responsibility and act stupid. Now, I’m not saying this happened to the victim, but in all three years of my counseling and responding to the ER for rape cases – alcohol was involved in 90% with the woman being more intoxicated than the male.

    • Laure / 21 Jun 2013 8:07pm #

      You were right, it did piss some people off. Well, me, at least. Enough to thing about leaving a reply… 😀

      While i agree that too much alcohol makes you stupid, i feel that you’re missing the point of sexual abuse: a wasted woman cannot give her consent. What i mean is that, obviously, if the man hasn’t received the clear information that he was welcomed to pursue his sexual advances, then he shouldn’t do anything!

      Being wasted and stupid doesn’t make you guilty. Nor acting dangerously. Nor even having fun by night with alcohol involved.
      Raping does.

      It’s because we continue to say to women “be careful” rather than saying to men “don’t rape” that the problem goes on.

      (btw, what the hell does “act like ladies” even mean? :/)

  19. Alex / 21 Jun 2013 11:00am #

    I’d just like to say this article has given me a renewed respect for Korean police work. Since I generally havent seen police doing anything in Korea, good or bad, it is reassuring that there is at least one officer out there who is making a valiant effort to what could have easily been another miscarriage of justice like so many unconvicted rape cases. Although, in fairness to Korean law enforcement officers, I have noticed more activity by them in recent months than in past years, but maybe thats a result of moving to Shinchon.

    Q: has the media reported what the accussed’s past 7 convictions were for? sexual assault laws are way too leniant here (and to a lesser extent in the states). I say we start chopping off hands. who’s with me?!

  20. kc / 16 Sep 2013 11:20pm #

    Thanks for the article, I would like to share my story for anyone reading.

    I recently just left Korea because I was raped. I am a young white American woman who is married to a Korean man.

    Anyway I was raped by a Korean man (I woke ul in a motel, naked, bloody, no idea where I was, or who the man was)

    As I leff the motel, my phone was dead, and on the walk home, a delivery motorbike driver sexually assaulted me in the street. He grabbed me from his bike, shoved his hand up my dress and started molesting me. I did get away after he let me go when a car pulled onto the street.

    My husband took me straight to the hospital and police station that night. My experience with.both are very very positive. This was in Yeoungdeungpo. The hospital had a female sex crime unit inside, they were professional, did a good job getting evidence, and had a counselor for me. The police were professional as well and actually ended up catching the rapist. They did a good.job on interrogating him and catching him lieing.

    Right now my case is suspended because Im in the USA. When I go back it will go back to court.The police have really tried in my case and it has helped tremendously to have a Korean husband.

    I have had many experiences in Korea that I never had happen in the USA. My first time in Korea, I had a man stalk me home then attempt to rape me. I have had 1 actual rape and 1 sexual assault. I have been gropped a lot, I have had my picture taken without permission, once while I had my eyes closed on the subway a korean guy was taking my picture…..I have had men follow me, make comments, offer me money for sex, and of course the leering and staring….every time I went out. I had so much male attention I couldnt stand it…..Korean men are aggressive towards foreign girls.

    Be careful if you go.

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