North Korea has sentenced to death a man who smuggled and sold copies of hit Netflix series Squid Games into the reclusive country.
This after North Korean law-enforcement authorities caught seven high school pupils watching the South Korea-set global phenomenon, Radio Free Asia (RFA) reported.
The condemned man, who is set to be executed via firing squad, brought back copies of the show on USB flash drives from China, RFA reported.
One of the pupils who bought a flash drive has been sentenced to life imprisonment while the remaining six have been sentenced to hard labour for five years.
However, one of the pupils (it’s unclear which one) dodged punishment thanks to their rich parents, who paid a $3,000 (R45,500) bribe, RFA reported via a source.
The arrest of the seven pupils marks the first time the authoritarian government has applied the law on the “elimination of reactionary thought and culture”, in a case involving minors, according to the source.
The law, enacted in 2020, carries a maximum penalty of death for watching, keeping or distributing media from capitalist countries, particularly from South Korea and the US.
The two Koreas have been technically been at war since 1950, even though an armistice was declared in 1953 but without a peace treaty
Second season on the way
Meanwhile, Squid Games – Netflix’s most successful show ever – could be getting a second season.
One of the show’s creators, Hwang Dong-Hyuk, told Associated Press two weeks ago that demand for a second season of the show had been so immense that it felt as though fans had left the show’s creators no choice.
“There will indeed be a second season. It’s in my head right now. I’m in the planning process currently.
“But I do think it’s too early to say when and how that’s going to happen. So, I will promise you this… Seoung Gi-Hun will come back and he will do something for the world.”
Squid Game is a South Korean survival drama series that debuted on Netflix this year. It became an instant hit in various countries around the world, drawing over 130 million fans and has even impacted people’s fashion choices.