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[Newsmaker] Mutilation murder suspect says killed victim over illegal hostess service

The suspect in the murder of a man whose dismembered body was found at Seoul Grand Park in Gwacheon, Gyeonggi Province, early this week said he killed the victim during a fight over an illegal hostess service at the suspect’s karaoke establishment.

Police are still investigating the 34-year-old man suspected of murdering the 51-year-old victim by stabbing him in the neck multiple times around 1 a.m. on Aug. 10 at the karaoke in Anyang, a city adjacent to Gwacheon on the southern outskirts of Seoul.

Police have requested a court warrant to search the karaoke establishment.

A torso of a man was found Sunday morning by a worker at Seoul Grand Park in a thicket near a road next to a parking lot.


The dismembered body was wrapped in black and white plastic bags. The body had clothing on it, but had been there for some time. Police found the head not far away, also inside a black plastic bag.

On Tuesday, police arrested the suspect, surnamed Byun, at an expressway service station in Seosan, about 100 kilometers south of Seoul.

Byun told police he got into a fight with the victim as the victim had quarreled with a hostess at his karaoke establishment and demanded that she be replaced, police said early Wednesday.

Enraged at the victim’s threats to report the illegal hostess service to police, the suspect allegedly stabbed him in the neck with a weapon at the karaoke counter, according to police.

Byun is also suspected of mutilating the victim’s body and leaving it in the bushes near Seoul Grand Park around 11:40 p.m. on the day of the killing.


Byun allegedly dismembered the body to make it easier to dispose of. He then looked at a map on the internet, police say, and decided to dump the body in the forested area around the Seoul Grand Park.

Many karaoke establishments in Korea -- called noraebang, or “singing rooms,” here -- provide illegal hostess services at night, when the female employees are called to entertain customers in the rooms.

Police plan to request a court warrant to detain Byun after seeking corroboration of the evidence.

By Kim So-hyun (