KARA is currently embroiled in a scandal of epic proportions after their manager in charge of Japanese activities has recently been outed as a member of the Chongryon, a radical pro-North Korean group in Japan. Suspicions had been raised recently by the public and media and officials with KARA have confirmed the fact.
DSP Media, KARA's management company and record label, said, "The man in question is an employee of DSP JAPAN and he is KARA's scheduling manager. We believe that his associations with North Korea will not be a problem, and we are confirming the speculations surrounding him."
The spokesperson for the idol group said, "While we believe this isn't a problem in Korea, there are some in Japan who have strong feelings about this and have brought up the fact [that he is a member of the Chongryon]. There has been a backlash against Korean products like K-Pop in Japan recently, and it seems that even among fans in Japan our ties to North Korea have become a hot topic. We have confirmed that the man in question is a member of Chongryon, and we will continue to monitor the situation and make our standpoint clear."
On Internet communities in Japan, members have found footage and photos of a 2006 raid on the radical Chongryon's headquarters in Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo which feature a man who looks strikingly similar to KARA's manager. Photos have been compiled of both the man seen in the police raid and KARA's manager, whose similarities are causing many to believe that they are the same person.
On the 18th and 19th of this month, KARA held a concert at the Seoul Olympic Park concert venue, despite the controversy. Photos taken at the event show a disappointing turnout, leaving some to wonder if the scandal has affected their fanbase.