North Korea is taking maximal measures to punish persons selling or distributing South Korea’s slasher series Squid Game.
According to reports by Radio Free Asia, a North Korean man has been put on death row after he was found guilty of distributing Netflix’s show on USB flash drives after it was banned in the country and its propagation considered illegal.
A high school student who bought the flash drive containing the series has been sentenced to life imprisonment while accomplices who watched the series were slapped with five years behind bars and hard labour. Their teachers have also been fired and sent to work in the mines for portraying irresponsibility in their work.
“This all started last week when a high school student secretly bought a USB flash drive containing the South Korean drama Squid Game and watched it with one of his best friends in class,” a source in law enforcement told RFA’s Korean Service.
“The friend told several other students, who became interested, and they shared the flash drive with them. They were caught by the censors in 109 Sangmu, who had received a tip-off,” the source said.
The accused were held under Elimination of Reactionary Thought and Culture Law Cap which seeks to eliminate inappropriate foreign media especially from countries like the US and South Korea from finding their way into the North Korean market.
Following this development, Authorities are now conducting raids to seize memory storage devices and Video Compact Discs (VCDs) containing illegal media from foreign countries.
Squid Game is the biggest Netflix series launch ever having garnered over 111 million views on over-the-top (OTT) platforms surpassing the popular English series Bridgerton which amassed 82 million views in 28 days after release.
The series which was released first premiered on September 17 was directed by Hwang Dong-hyuk.