In South Korea, trials for semen terrorism have been ongoing in recent years, and in many cases, the defendants are ultimately punished for "destruction of property."
According to the Guardian, in May 2021, a male civil servant who put sperm in a colleague's coffee tumbler six times in a six-month period was fined 3 million won (about $280,000). The charge, however, was "destruction of property," and the court said that the act was damaging to the tumbler.
Also in 2019, a man who moistened a woman's shoes with semen was fined 500,000 won (about $46,000). This was also "destruction of property," and investigators argued that there was no legal basis for making it a sex crime.
In the same year, a man was sentenced to three years in prison for repeatedly putting laxatives and aphrodisiacs in a woman's coffee. On 54 occasions, the man also mixed a mixture of laxatives and aphrodisiacs with semen and phlegm and put it in coffee and other liquids, but no sex crime was committed.
This is not just a Korean problem.
Korean law requires physical violence or threats of physical violence to qualify as a sex crime.
However, with the support of the global #MeToo movement and others, the court rulings that treat sex crimes as property damage and the attitude of society as a whole toward sex crimes have been criticized.
According to the Times of India, a woman studying at Delhi University in India reported on Instagram that several men threw balloons filled with semen at women in 2018.
In addition, Park So-young, founder of Digital Sex Crime Out, an organisation that fights digital crime in South Korea, warned in a 2018 BBC report that sex crimes can spread worldwide through the Internet.
In South Korea, the sharing of images from small hidden cameras installed in women's restrooms, hotels, and fitting rooms on pornographic websites has become a problem.
Park said, "Digital sex crimes are not just a problem in South Korea; they are also happening in Sweden and the United States." But Korea is technologically advanced and has the fastest speed in the world, and everyone has access to the Internet. That means that these online crimes targeting women have been happening the fastest. But it won't take long for this to become a problem in other countries as well. So we have to work together to solve this problem internationally.
Politicians are on the move.
In response to social criticism, South Korean politicians have begun to develop legislation to punish semen terrorism as a sex crime.