NATIONAL

[Newsmaker] Police to question skating coach over sexual assault allegations

By Choi He-suk
  • Published : Jan 13, 2019 - 17:07
  • Updated : Jan 13, 2019 - 17:10
Former short track speedskating coach Cho Jae-beom may be questioned by the police over allegations of sexual assault as early as Wednesday, local media reported Sunday.

According to reports, the investigators plan to question Cho at the prison in Suwon, Gyeonggi Province, where he is serving a 10-month sentence for habitually assaulting Olympic gold medalist Shim Suk-hee. 

Former short track coach Cho Jae-beom seen before his court appearance in June last year. Yonhap

The assaults for which Cho is serving time were nonsexual in nature. But the allegations of sexual assault came to light earlier this month, when it was revealed that Shim had filed a criminal complaint against Cho in December. In the latest police complaint, Shim accuses Cho of sexually molesting her on a regular basis for about four years beginning in 2014, when she was 17 years old.

The police in Gyeonggi Province have launched a 17-member team to look into these latest allegations. The team is reported to be focusing on recovering data from digital devices belonging to Cho, including mobile devices, as well as data from Shim’s mobile phone.

While Cho denies the sexual assault allegations, the Young Skaters Association says other skaters have made similar accusations against the former coach but are reluctant to come forward.

By Choi He-suk (cheesuk@heraldcorp.com)