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Kim Ji Won faces accusations of tax evasion

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Actress

Kim Ji Won

‘s recent real estate venture in

Gangnam

, Seoul, has stirred up quite the buzz in Korean media circles. The news, initially reported by various outlets, revealed that the actress had acquired a building situated in the district of Gangnam, Seoul, for a staggering 6.30 billion KRW, roughly equivalent to $4.57 million USD. Confirmation of the purchase came from the deputy manager of a prominent real estate brokerage, who disclosed that the transaction had been finalized in June 2021, reports Koreaboo.

The building, boasting one basement floor and five additional floors above ground level, commands a prime location mere minutes away from Gangnam-Gu Office Station. It is nestled within a neighborhood renowned for its high-quality rentals and esteemed real estate.
However, what piqued the curiosity of

netizens

was the revelation that the building was purchased under the auspices of ‘Jiwon Entertainment Co, Ltd’. Notably, Kim Ji Won stands as the sole representative and staff member under this company. This revelation sparked accusations among netizens, who speculated that the actress might have established a paper company as a means to facilitate the real estate acquisition. This tactic, often employed by

celebrities

, serves various purposes, including the ability to secure a business loan instead of a personal one and potentially minimizing personal estate taxes.
Further reports revealed that Kim Ji Won’s estimated loan for the acquisition amounted to 55% of the total purchase price, with four out of the six floors currently leased out. Netizens wasted no time in connecting the dots, alleging that Kim Ji Won might have planned the establishment of Jiwon Entertainment Co. in a calculated manner to circumvent tax obligations.

Their scrutiny intensified as they pointed out a crucial detail: a law stipulates that companies are only exempted from certain real estate taxes if the purchase occurs five years after the company’s establishment. Interestingly, it was found that Kim Ji Won set up Jiwon Entertainment in March 2016, making the building purchase in June 2021. This isn’t the first instance of a celebrity resorting to the creation of paper companies for real estate investments. In the past, similar tactics have drawn criticism, with SEVENTEEN’s DK being among those in the spotlight for such actions.

In response to mounting scrutiny, Kim Ji Won’s agency, High Zium Studio, issued a brief statement to Herald Pop on April 19, 2024, asserting that “it is hard to confirm as this is the artist’s personal matters”. However, far from assuaging concerns, the statement has only served to intensify public scrutiny, with netizens expressing heightened disapproval of the actress’s actions.

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