FC Seoul Given Record $82K Fine for Using Sex Dolls as Fans in Empty Stadium

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistMay 20, 2020

SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA - FEBRUARY 18: FC Seoul fans cheer after the AFC Champions League Group E match between FC Seoul and Melbourne Victory at the Seoul World Cup Stadium on February 18, 2020 in Seoul, South Korea. (Photo by Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images)
Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images

The K-League fined soccer club FC Seoul a league-record 100 million Korean won ($82,000) for using sex dolls to fill empty seats during a match Sunday.

According to Reuters (h/t ESPN), the fine was officially levied for "damaging the prestige and integrity of the league."

The club placed about 20 sex dolls in empty seats during their 1-0 win over Gwangju FC since no fans are allowed to attend matches due to the coronavirus pandemic. Teams are permitted to use mannequins to simulate fans, but the K-League determined that the use of sex dolls was a violation.

FC Seoul officials said they were unaware that the dolls were adult products despite the fact that some of them were holding placards that advertised an adult toy manufacturer.

The club said the following in a statement regarding the situation:

"We would like to apologize to the fans. ... We are very sorry about the supporting mannequins that were placed during the game on May 17. These mannequins may have been made to look and feel like real humans but they are not for sexual use—as confirmed by the manufacturer from the beginning.

"Our intention was to do something lighthearted in these difficult times. We will think hard about what we need to do to ensure that something like this never happens again."

FC Seoul also said it "humbly accepted" the penalty handed down by the K-League.

The club could face further punishment since any advertisement at Seoul World Cup Stadium requires advance permission. As a result, FC Seoul could potentially be expelled from the venue.

FC Seoul are six-time K-League champions and are currently sixth in the K-League standings this season through two matches with one win and one loss.