INDICTED ....Park Si-Yeon at the 17th Busan International Film Festival in October last year.
FOUR SOUTH Korean TV stars have been indicted with illegal use of the drug Propofol, a sedative and anaesthetic blamed in the death of Michael Jackson. Between them and a space of two years, they were given 433 shots in total.
Prosecutors are charging actresses Park Si-Yeon, Lee Seung-Yeon, Jang Mi-In-Ae and Hyun Young with taking the psychotropic drug for "non-medical purposes", said a spokesman for the Seoul Central District Prosecutors' Office.
Two doctors from the Gangnam district in Seoul who prescribed the drugs have also been arrested. "The doctors indiscriminately injected the drugs without consideration of the risks of addiction, to earn more cash," he added.
Propofol is a powerful sedative used as a general anaesthetic. It reduces anxiety and promotes relaxation but may cause a person to experience hallucinations.
South Korea classified the drug as a psychotropic medicine two years ago, making it illegal to prescribe or consume other than for stipulated treatments that may need anaesthesia, such as a gastro-intestinal endoscopy.
Park, a top actress who has appeared in many TV shows and movies, allegedly received the so-called "milk shot" containing the creamy-coloured Propofol 185 times from February 2011 to December 2012, prosecutors said.
Lee, an actress and a TV talk show host, allegedly got 111 injections during the same period, and fellow actress Jang 95 shots in 2011 and 2012. Hyun, an actress and TV show host, also got 42 shots in 2011, according to prosecutors.
All four celebrities insisted they received the injections for dermatological and plastic surgery treatments.
The arraignment against the ladies follow numerous media reports regarding the extensive abuse of Propofol in the entertainment industry, with performers using the drug to mitigate the impact of gruelling schedules.
In 2011, Dr Conrad Murray was jailed for four years after being convicted of involuntary manslaughter for giving Michael Jackson Propofol nightly for two months before his death, and on the day he died on 25th June 2009. (Reuters)