Ex-prosecutor found guilty of blackmailing doctor

A Seoul court on Friday found an ex-prosecutor guilty of squeezing money out of a plastic surgeon after the former prosecutor's girlfriend, the actress Lee Yoon-ji, better known by her stage name Amy, complained of having side effects from an earlier operation.

Judges at the Seoul Central District Court sentenced the ex-legal official to eight months in prison and two years of probation on criminal charges of intimidation.

The defendant, only identified by his surname Jeon, admitted to most of the charges. It is unclear if he will appeal. Prosecutors had indicted their former colleague in January.

From late 2012 to early 2013, Jeon had threatened to press charges against Lee's doctor, who at the time was under suspicion of having raped a female patient in a separate case, if he did not pay reparations to Lee, according to prosecutors.

Jeon had told the plastic surgeon, only identified by his family name Choi, to pay 22.5 million won ($22,200) in damages and to do another operation on Lee free of charge to reduce her plastic surgery side effects. Otherwise, Jeon had reportedly said he would initiate investigations into the surgeon's rape charges. Choi purportedly paid the money and conducted a follow-up surgery on Lee.

Jeon and Lee had met when the then-prosecutor had indicted the actress on drug abuse charges in 2012.

The 32-year-old actress had exceeded the prescribed dosage of propofol. After serving an eight-month prison term, Lee began dating Jeon.

Jeon had sympathized with Lee when she told him about Choi. According to Lee, Choi refused to take responsibility for Lee's medical problems, most of which she claimed had been caused by the surgery.

In a separate case, Lee is facing charges of abusing zolpidem, a medication used to treat sleeping disorders.

By Jeong Hunny (hj257@heraldcorp.com)