[Hyundai Motor’s Fake Rally] ①“Mee-hee's entering a Seolleongtang diner” … Evidence of Hyundai Motor’s Surveillance Obtained

Sep. 25, 2023, 05:00 PM.

Physical evidence proving that the security guards who participated in the Hyundai Motor Group's fake rally were practically surveilling individuals in conflict with the company and journalists has been confirmed. 
KCIJ-Newstapa has obtained part of transcripts of the mobile messenger group chat room, which was used by the security guards to report what they heard and saw to their seniors.
Hyundai Motor has been interrupting other rallies and protests by laid-off workers by registering rallies to all areas around its Yangjae-dong headquarters in Seoul, and then placing security contractors disguised as rally participants. (Related article: Hyundai Motor's 13-year Protest Interruption, and Young Men in Black)
According to the transcripts obtained, the fake rally security contractors used two KakaoTalk open-chat rooms named ‘Yangjae Room 1’ and ‘Yangjae Room 2.’ The source told KCIJ-Newstapa that about 100 members of the fake rally security guards report what is going on at the rally sites real time in these chat rooms.
The reporters obtained parts of the transcript of the conversations that took place on Tuesday, July 25 and Wednesday, July 26.
Young men in black are standing on the sidewalk in front of the Hyundai Motor Group headquarters in Yangjae-dong, Seoul, holding banners with slogans such as “Illegal Rally Out.”

Security guards intensively monitored ‘Mee-hee’... Even overheard her phone conversations

To Hyundai Motor Group, Park Mee-hee is like a pain in the neck. Park worked as a salesperson at a Kia Motor dealership in 2013. She was fired after blowing the whistle on unfair sales practices at her dealership store to an executive at Kia headquarter. She has been protesting and rallying in front of Hyundai Motor and Kia Motors headquarters for the past decade, calling for reinstatement. 
The core task of Hyundai Motor’s fake rally participants, the security contractors, is to preempt all the sidewalks around the headquarters buildings to prevent Park from rallying and protesting and to monitor her closely.
In their KakaoTalk chat room, the fake rally contractors called Park by her first name “Mee-hee.” In Korea, it’s considered impolite and disrespectful to address individuals of an older age or of in a formal relationship by their first name. 
As soon as Park was spotted, the guards’ fingers moved busily. Park's every single action and movement was live-reported in this chat room. 
Records depicted her movement minute-by-minute: How she carried the rally materials, waited for the pedestrian  signal at the crosswalk, and where she went after crossing the street.
Reports about protesters who are being monitored by Hyundai Motor Group's fake rally contractors are posted on KakaoTalk group chat rooms. 
When we checked with Park Mee-hee, every single movement and route that were reported by the security contractors actually matched the route she actually took on the same day.
On July 26, a security contractor reported in the KakaoTalk chat room that “Park entered a Seolleongtang diner to eat.” 
In fact, Park only eats at this place across the street from Hyundai Motor's headquarters, where the diner’s sign is visible. As the fake rally contractors take over all the surrounding sidewalks at all times, Park said she holds a rally once a week on Wednesdays in a safe zone in the middle of the road. And if she leaves her rally materials in the safe zone to get something to eat, the guards file a complaint to the Seocho District office to remove her materials or call the police, she said. 
To prevent such a situation, Park said she has no other choice but only to go to this Seolleongtang place where she can directly view the safe zone from her go-to seat next to the window.
Usually, we can't go anywhere else. This place, the Seolleongtang diner, where we can see the safe zone, is practically the only place we can go, because if we are not present at the safe zone even for a moment, the guards call the Seocho District office or the police to get them come and take this (the rally materials) out...

-Park Mee-hee, Kia dealership store whistleblower
“Mee-hee's car is leaving. I overheard her phone call, and she said she was going to the District office,” Kwon, a security contractor, reported in the KakaoTalk Yangjae Room 1. The two KakaoTalk chat room conversation history showed that the security contractors even overheard the phone call conversations to determine Park's whereabouts, an action that’s effectively like wiretapping.
Records of Hyundai Motor's fake rally participants, the security contractors, overhearing phone conversations of Park Mee-hee, a Kia dealership store whistleblower, remained in the Yangjae Room 1, a KakaoTalk group chat room.
KCIJ-Newstapa showed Park the logs of the KakaoTalk chat room, where the security contractors monitored and reported on her. She said she was not surprised.
I always feel like that (I'm being watched). Here (on the sidewalk across from the safe zone), there's no camera right now, but later when a lot of people come (to join my weekly rally), they always have a camera on standby. So we once called the police and said that it’s unpleasant to be filmed. We’re not doing anything criminal, but why do we have to be filmed (from the security guards) all the time?” And then the police always say, “We can't do anything about the filming.”

-Park Mee-hee / Kia dealership store whistleblower

“Mee-hee's boyfriend is waiting for the pedestrian signal” Park’s colleagues are also monitored

Hyundai Motor's fake rally participants, the security guards, were found that they also monitored the whereabouts and movements of Park’s colleagues who helped setting up and operating her rallies. 
The guards called a man, a frequent participant of Park's weekly rallies, “Mee-hee's boyfriend” in their chat room.
Hyundai Motor's fake rally contractors also closely monitored Park Mee-hee's co-workers, referring to them by their names or nicknames.
I didn't know that they were using the term boyfriend. Around the end of July, Kim stayed with me around the area most of the time, so I think that must be why they were referring to him like that.

-Park Mee-hee / Kia dealership store whistleblower

Fake rally contractors shadowed around and overheard journalists covering Park’s rally

Reporters trying to cover Park’s rally around Hyundai Motor Group headquarters were also monitored by the company’s fake rally contractors. They overheard the reporters’  conversations with Park and police officers at the rally site, and reported on them to the chat room in detail. Two reporters, the subjects of monitoring this day, were from other media outlets, not KCIJ-Newstapa.
One of Hyundai Motor’s fake rally contractors eavesdropped on two journalists' conversations and reported to their group chat room in detail. 
In the end, the existence of this KakaoTalk chat room proves that the testimony of the security company whistleblower who had an interview with KCIJ-Newstapa earlier was true. (Related article: Hyundai Motor's Contract Rallyist Witnesses Illegal Surveillance)
KCIJ-Newstapa also found evidence that Hyundai Motor had been receiving reports of surveilling protesters and union officials – those who tried to protest or rally around its headquarters building – directly from the fake rally contractors in these Kakao chat rooms. There was a phone number disseminated to the contractors for a direct report.
Reporting Kim Ji-yoon, Hong Woo-ram
Video Reporting Jeong Hyung-min, Lee Sang-chan, Oh Joon-sik
Video EditingJung Ji-sung
CG Jung Dong-woo
Design Lee Do-hyeon
Publishing Heo Hyeon-jae