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Olympic short track champion files compliant against ex-coach over sexual assault

21:43 January 08, 2019

SUWON, South Korea, Jan. 8 (Yonhap) -- South Korean Olympic short track champion Shim Suk-hee has filed a complaint against her ex-coach over alleged sex assault, police said Tuesday, adding to the allegations of violence by the suspect.

Shim accused Cho Jae-beom of raping and sexually molesting her multiple times since 2014 when she was a high school student, according to the complaint submitted to police on Dec. 17.

The 22-year-old Shim said that Cho's alleged sexual abuse continued until around two months before the opening of the PyeongChang Winter Olympics in February 2018.

She said that she could not tell the truth because of Cho's threat that the revelation could hamper her career.

"Shim has recently alleged that Cho raped her," said a person close to Shim, explaining the reason for filing additional complaint against him.

Cho's attorneys told local broadcaster SBS that he denied the allegations of sexual assault.

Cho received a 10-month prison term in September for physically assaulting Shim and three other skaters between 2011 and January 2018.

An incident involving Shim came to light in mid-January 2018, just weeks before the PyeongChang Olympics, when Shim left the national team training facility, apparently to avoid further assaults by Cho.

Shim is a two-time Olympian with four medals -- two gold, one silver and one bronze -- to her credit. Skating just weeks after the alleged assault, Shim helped South Korea to the gold in the women's 3,000-meter relay. It was her second consecutive gold in the relay event.

South Korean short track speed skater Shim Suk-hee speaks to reporters after testifying against her former coach Cho Jae-beom in his assault trial at the Suwon District Court in Suwon, 45 kilometers south of Seoul, on Dec. 17, 2018. (Yonhap)


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