The former employee of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of South Korea is facing charges for attempting to sell Jungkook’s lost hat online.
According to a Feb. 7 report by Korean media outlet Koreaboo, prosecutors have summarily indicted the former employee on embezzlement charges. The authorities, however, didn’t disclose his identity to the public.
In October 2022, the former government employee posted Jungkook’s lost bucket hat online and tried selling it for 10 million Korean won (over P400,000) along with his ID, identifying himself as a Ministry of Foreign Affairs employee.
Eagle-eyed ARMYs noticed that it was Jungkook’s hat in his post, which received negative feedback as some fans raised ethical issues and noted he even used to be a government employee.
The seller claimed he had acquired the ownership of the hat since it was left unclaimed for six months after it was reported as a "lost property."
“There was no phone call or visitation for six months looking for the item even after the item was reported. So the person who found it is able to take ownership,” the seller explained.
According to the HYBE, BTS' agency, Jungkook’s lost Kangol hat, originally priced at $70 (over P3,000), was left by the K-pop idol during his visit to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs office to get a diplomatic passport in September 2021.
After facing backlash, the former employee reportedly turned down his post and surrendered himself and the lost hat to Seoul Central District Prosecutors Office.
The prosecutors intend to return the lost hat to its original owner, Jungkook.
Jungkook is part of the BTS, along with RM, Jin, Suga, J-Hope, Jimin, and V. The K-pop group is widely considered as South Korea's biggest-ever cultural phenomenon, selling out stadiums worldwide, dominating the charts, raking in billions, and building a global legion of fans known as ARMY.