Former national speed skater Kim Min-seok (23) was sentenced to a fine in a drunk driving trial.
On the 9th, Chief Judge Lee Soo-hyun of the first detective at the Cheongju District Court sentenced Kim Min-seok, who was handed over to trial for violating the Road Traffic Act (drunk driving), to a fine of 4 million won.
Kim Min-seok won a silver medal in speed skating team pursuit and a bronze medal in 1500m at the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics. At the 2022 Beijing Olympics last year, he won a bronze medal in the 1500 m.
Kim Min-seok, who has established himself as a mid-distance star on the Korean ice, collided with a curbstone on the sidewalk while driving a car drunk in Jincheon National Training Center in North Chungcheong Province in July of last year. The police analyzed the CCTV of a restaurant near the athlete’s village and confirmed that Min-seok Kim had been drinking with three of his colleagues before the accident. After estimating his blood alcohol level to the level of license revocation, he was sent to the prosecution with the opinion of indictment without detention.
In March, the Cheongju District Court issued a summary order of a fine of 8 million won to Kim Min-seok, and Kim Min-seok’s participation in the 2026 Olympics seemed to be canceled.
According to the rules of the Korea Sports Council, if an athlete who has been punished under Article 148-2 of the Road Traffic Act for drunk driving or other related acts is sentenced to a fine of less than 5 million won, he cannot acquire national qualifications for two years. If he is sentenced to a fine of more than 5 million won for drunk driving, he will be disqualified from the national team for three years.
As Kim Min-seok requested a formal trial and was sentenced to a reduced fine of 4 million won, the path to participate in the Olympics was also opened. Kim Min-seok’s suspension of qualification for the national team ends in May 2025. In terms of timing, Kim Min-seok can participate in the 2025-26 speed skating national selection. If he becomes a national representative, he can also aim to participate in the 2026 Milan-Cortina d’Ampezzo Winter Olympics.먹튀검증
The situation may change depending on whether the prosecution appeals or not and the trial schedule, but Kim Min-seok, who was driven to the brink, can now dream of his national team and the Olympics again.
Meanwhile, speed skater Jung Jae-woong, who requested a formal trial after receiving a summary order of 8 million won for drunk driving, was fined 4 million won that day.