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[HanCinema's News] Torture Victim Featured in "Spy Nation" Dies in Japan


On December 27th director Choi Seungho of "Spy Nation" announced on Facebook that alleged spy Kim Seung-hyo had died in Japan on December 26th. Kim Seung-hyo was among the persons featured in "Spy Nation" as having been wrongly accused of spying for the North Korean government for political reasons during the dictatorship era. Kim Seung-hyo died in Japan, having been released there as a condition of his parole in 1981.


Kim Seung-hyo was convicted in 1974 of espionage on the basis of a confession that had been extracted via torture and received a twelve year sentence. The psychological damage inflicted by this torture was enough to force him to undergo intermittent treatments at various mental hospitals. Kim Seung-hyo became paranoid and was unwilling to discuss his experiences even with family members due to threats he had received before his release.

Kim Seung-hyo was ultimately granted a new trial regarding these charges in 2015, though his older brother had to attend the retrial in his stead due to these issues. At that time Kim Seung-hyo described South Korea as a terrible country, and did not mince words regarding South Korea's treatment of political prisoners in "Spy Nation" which proved to be a major platform regarding the injustice pepetrated against him. Kim Seung-hyo was ultimately exonerated of these prior charges in 2018.

Written by William Schwartz

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Creative Commons License"[HanCinema's News] Torture Victim Featured in "Spy Nation" Dies in Japan"
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