Two Korean Air heiresses who have been in the news the past few years for their bad tempers are now being investigated for something else.
Most of you probably remember the viral 2014 incident in which Heather Cho went berserk after a flight attendant served her nuts in a bag rather than in a ramekin. She was flying first class from New York to Seoul Incheon, and demanded that the flight attendants get on their knees to apologize, that the plane be turned around, and that the flight attendant who served her incorrectly be offloaded.
She ended up being sentenced to one year in jail for obstructing aviation safety, though she was released after three months. As you’d expect, she was fired from the airline, though her sister took on many of her former roles, and promised to avenge her. Now Heather Cho is making a return to her dad’s company, though she’ll be managing the company’s portfolio of hotels, rather than the airline.
Then last week her sister, who is still at Korean Air, was accused of assault. Specifically, it was reported that Cho Hyun-min was being accused of throwing a cup of water in the face of an advertising agency employee at a recent meeting. Apparently she was dissatisfied with the agency’s work, and then “yelled and threw a cup of water at the employee.”
The drama isn’t over for these two ladies, though. Now there are reports that the Cho family has been illegally importing luxury goods to Korea without paying customs duties, which the Korea Customs Service is investigating.
Media outlets are reporting that the two sisters regularly avoided customs taxes after buying luxury goods worth millions of won outside Korea. An anonymous Korean Air employee said that the family had Korean Air officials at overseas offices purchase luxury goods for them, then they were flown to Korea on Korean Air planes, and then they were carried out of the airport by airline employees, bypassing local customs.
According to Korean law, items worth $600 or more must be reported to the customs office, while the Cho sisters allegedly brought in handbags, furniture, and food, worth significantly more.
I’ll be watching for the outcome of this investigation, as I’m sure many people in Korea are. This couldn’t happen to nicer people, eh?
(Tip of the hat to SQflyer)