Open Door Church Archive

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Teen bashed for not attending church

Three leaders of a Korean church in Sydney have been jailed for bashing a young woman who failed to regularly attend services.

Junior assistant pastor Chi Yeong Yun, 37, and Bible study teachers Tom Chae-Yong Lee, 22, and James Kang, 21, from the Open Door Presbyterian Church in Chatswood, northern Sydney, pleaded guilty to assaulting Angela Kim, 19, in July last year.

In the New South Wales District Court today, Acting Judge Joe Gibson named Yun as the “architect of the plan” to punish Ms Kim for not regularly attending the church and disrespecting her elders.

Yun was given a 12 month jail term, Kang was sentenced to nine months, and Lee received a three month sentence.

The court was told Ms Kim was picked up at the Waitara train station on July 8 last year and was taken by the men to a park at Bobbin Head in northern Sydney.

She was kicked and punched for about two hours, leaving her with extensive bruising to her arms, legs and buttocks.

Two nights later, Kang went to Ms Kim’s home and smashed her portable CD player.

Judge Gibson said Kang’s actions were intended to further enforce the message from the beating.

In handing down the sentences, he said the actions of the three men had gone against their teachings.

“Whether it was intended that it go as far as it did, I don’t know,” he said.

“Religion in this day and age does not countenance such conduct … and is against the teachings of God.”

Women could not be “coerced and beaten into compliance”, Judge Gibson said.

“The victim is an adult able to make up her own decisions.”

During the hearing, Kang told the court the group had intended to help Ms Kim but their approaches got out of hand.

He said he knew the actions were wrong, and that in future he would deal with people who had problems through the teachings of the Bible.

After the sentences were handed down, a supporter of the three accused collapsed and had to be taken from Downing Centre Court on a stretcher to a waiting ambulance.

Teenage girl attacked by church trio

A pastor and two bible studies teachers bashed a 19-year-old Korean girl because they thought she had been disrespectful to her parents and had stopped attending church.Chi Yeong Yun, a junior pastor at the Open Door Presbyterian Church in Chatswood, and bible study teachers James Kang and Tom Chae-Young Lee pleaded guilty yesterday to assaulting Angela Kim at a park at Sydney’s Bobbin Head in July last year.

The NSW District Court heard the men believed the young woman had stopped going to church, had been disrespectful to her elders and had been spending too much time on her web page.

Kang, who the court heard stood 180cm tall and weighed more than 130kg, had telephoned Ms Kim at the request of Yun and arranged to meet her at Waitara railway station, in northern Sydney.

Kang and his friend Lee picked her up about 9pm and drove her to the Bobbin Head park where they and Yun beat her and kicked her over a two-hour period.

She suffered extensive bruising to her head, arms, buttocks and legs.

Mr Kang said he had taken the girl to the park with the intention of discussing her “problems” with the pastor.

He said it had been his intention to help the girl but the situation “just got out of hand”.

In the days after he bashed Ms Kim, Kang went to her house and destroyed her portable CD player.

“I broke the CD player because I was angry that Angela, she didn’t keep her promise,” he said.

“She had promised us and herself that she would behave good … and close down her web page that she was spending a lot of time on.”

All three men said they now realised what they had done was wrong and against the law.

“For a person like me, 180cm, 130kg, it’s just not hard hitting a girl. Hitting a girl, it just isn’t right,” Kang said.

Lee, who drove the car and participated in the bashing, said he had taken Ms Kim to Bobbin Head because Yun was “looking for a quiet place.”

He said he had heard through the Open Door Church that Ms Kim had “showed disrespect to her parents, and did some trouble”.

“She had no idea of respect, she was just hanging around with her friends,” Lee said.

Chang Kim, senior elder at the Open Door Church appeared as a character witness for one of the men and said he thought “a simple argument took place”. He said that if the three large men had really intended to hurt the girl, the fight would have resulted in broken bones.

Acting judge James Gibson made Mr Kim look at the photographs of the girl’s wounds, after which Mr Kim retracted his statement about a simple argument. “Now I acknowledge the prosecution,” he said.