Omega X's Hwichan was 'forced to touch former CEO,' agency says

Photo shared by Omega X's current agency, IPQ, on Wednesday, shows a KakaoTalk messenger screen where Kang Seong-hee, wife of the CEO of Spire Entertainment, Omega X's former agency, taking a photo of member Lee Hwi-chan in his sleep to the former manager of Omega X [IPQ]

IPQ Entertainment contested accusations that Omega X's Hwichan had sexually assaulted his former agency's CEO. The physical contact in question was “forced” by the former executive, the agency said Wednesday.

The band's former agency, Spire Entertainment, claimed in a news conference Tuesday that Hwichan had sexually assaulted its former CEO Kang Seong-hee in July 2022.

Spire Entertainment presented surveillance camera footage from July 11 of that year appearing to show the Omega X singer, whose real name is Lee Hwi-chan, forcibly touching and kissing Kang.

Spire Entertainment's current CEO, Hwang Sung-woo — who is Kang's husband — claimed that Hwichan had requested a one-on-one talk with Kang, after which he had forced himself onto her “against her will.”

IPQ Entertainment rejected that account on Wednesday.

Screenshot shared by IPQ, Omega X's current agency, on Wednesday, shows a conversation between Kang Seong-hee, the former CEO of Spire Entertainment, the band's former agency, and a member of Omega X. Kang, left, said that a member is "out" because he "did not say I love you" to Kang. The member, on the right, is seen replying back to Kang "I love you, CEO." [IPQ]

“It was Kang Seong-hee who requested the private session with Hwichan, according to testimonies from the members and the group's former manager,” the agency said.

“Kang demanded gestures of affection and touching, as usual, even after the members and staff left the room,” it added. “Hwichan was forced to follow her demand, because he was scared of the threats and verbal and physical abuse that would have followed if he didn't comply.”

“Even the surveillance camera footage shows that Hwichan did not 'force' himself onto her, nor does she express signs of refusal,” continued the agency. “This is proof that Kang had requested 'signs of affection' in the past.”

Kang, IPQ said, later sent images of Hwichan drunk and asleep to the group's former manager. The manager offered to transport the singer back to his accommodation, per the agency, but Kang was determined to “take him herself.”

IPQ Entertainment demanded that Spire release surveillance footage of the full encounter, rather than the edited version presented at its news conference, in order to show “the whole truth.”