A former South Korean presidential contender accused of raping two women including his aide has denied the allegations against him, in the highest-profile case linked to the country's growing #MeToo campaign.
Ahn Hee-jung -- who came second to current President Moon Jae-in in the contest for the ruling Democratic Party's presidential nomination last year -- said the sex was "consensual", in comments to reporters before being questioned by prosecutors Monday.
Kim Ji-eun, who was Ahn's personal assistant before becoming an aide in civil affairs, said in a TV interview that he had raped her four times since she was hired last June.
The revelation sparked nationwide fury. Ahn resigned as governor of South Chungcheong province and announced his retirement from politics, asking for "forgiveness for my foolish action" in an apology posted on Facebook.
Kim asked prosecutors to investigate Ahn before another woman -- a worker at a policy think tank run by Ahn -- came forward to demand a probe over the 52-year-old for multiple rapes.
But Ahn on Monday denied the accusations by the two women, saying he had "consensual" sex with both.
"I think it was consensual relationship. But the accusers say it was not. I apologise," Ahn said while attending Seoul prosecutors' office.
"I am sorry to all the people who loved and supported me as well as my wife and my family."