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ILLIT's BELIFT LAB files defamation suit against ADOR CEO Min Hee Jin

By Aubrey Shane Lim Published May 24, 2024 2:52 pm

BELIFT LAB, the agency of K-pop groups Enhypen and ILLIT, is taking legal action against ADOR CEO Min Hee Jin. 

On May 22, BELIFT LAB  released a statement through X saying that it had filed a defamation suit against Min for causing harm to the company and its affiliated artists through her “unilateral false claims.”

Min, the CEO of K-pop group NewJeans, made accusations of plagiarism against BELIFT LAB, claiming that they copied her group’s concept for its group, ILLIT. 

BELIFT LAB claimed in their statement that the plagiarism allegations are not true.

“We have submitted evidence to the judicial authorities that can prove these allegations are false,” the statement, reported by Soompi, read.

The company added that it aims to clarify the truth through proper legal proceedings.

“The determination of intellectual property has been plagiarized should be made on reasonable standards and procedures, not on unilateral and distorted interpretations,” the statement read.

BELIFT LAB also stated that the members of ILLIT have been suffering from malicious comments and personal attacks amid the dispute between the two companies. 

“We earnestly request that all the indiscriminate insults, malicious slander, spread of false information, and defamatory attacks against our artists to be ceased immediately,” the statement read.

On May 13, South Korean news outlet Ilgan Sports reported that the parents of NewJeans have voiced their concerns regarding HYBE chairman Bang Si Hyuk’s treatment of the group through a letter addressed to Min. 

Min then sent a letter to HYBE via email.

“It is deeply regrettable that another label under the same parent company could plan a team that is intentionally reminiscent of NewJeans's debut era within just one year and eight months since NewJeans's debut," the letter read.

The accusations in the letter were denounced by HYBE, stating that Min was “using an old-fashioned practice” by “dragging in artists and their families in her own battles for personal greed.” 

HYBE added that they have evidence that Min sent email attacks as a part of her plan to take over the company’s management rights.

The lawsuit emerged as part of an ongoing feud regarding management rights between the ADOR CEO and South Korean entertainment giant HYBE– ADOR and BELIFT LAB’s parent company. 

The company also houses Bighit Entertainment (home to artists BTS and Tomorrow X Together) and Pledis Entertainment (home to Seventeen, fromis_9, and TWS).