The MBC raid in 1999 was one of the strangest incidents in modern Korean history. Lee Jae-Rock and his followers had invaded MBC’s control room and caused great chaos throughout the broadcasting corporation. Lee Jae-Rock was the pastor of the Manmin Church, and his followers did anything he asked of them because they believed that he had the power to fix everything. In reality, Lee staged everything in advance, and people automatically fell into his trap. Lee held special programs where he miraculously healed sick people within seconds, and in most of his shows, people saw birds and the divine light around Lee, which was somehow inexplicable. But Lee had set it all up beforehand, and then he used these props to fool his followers into thinking he actually had powers. Lee made his followers believe that touching his shadow and clothes would bring them divine blessings. Lee’s followers gave him money, but he used it for gambling, and this money helped him travel all over the world.
Several female followers came forward with their testimonies and detailed Lee’s crimes. He often physically abused them and took them to a place called ‘Epang Palace.’ The producers of MBC tried to talk to Lee because they wanted to know his side of the story. However, he refused to meet with the producers, and his followers threatened them. Lee knew how to manipulate and brainwash the minds of his followers to achieve what he wanted.
The Attack On MBC
On May 11, 1999, the Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) decided to carry the story of the Manmin Church on its program ‘PD Note’. Although the producers received threatening calls, they decided to run the story anyways. Lee always manipulated his followers into believing that all the broadcasters were fake and slandered the Manmin Church. Lee’s followers were completely under his control and followed all his instructions blindly, having detached from reality. Soon after, he decided to hold a healing rally at the church, where many people decided to attack MBC because they thought the producers were insulting Lee Jae-Rock. When the producers were about to start broadcasting, they noticed that many people had gathered in front of the building, chanting Lee Jae-Rock’s name and praying. It was an uncomfortable situation, and the crowd was completely confused. As soon as the broadcast began, people started shouting very loudly, and before it could continue, Lee’s supporters entered the control room and destroyed all the videotapes, so the broadcast could not be aired.
Many producers were attacked, and their families received threatening calls from some supporters. They threatened to kill them, and at this point, everyone working there feared for their lives. Some of them had managed to hide in the building because the supporters were ready to kill anyone who got in their way. Some of them rushed to the main control room and broke into it, although this should have been impossible since a third person was supposed to guarantee access to the room. The whole situation was shocking to analyze, as thousands of people had been brainwashed by Lee. Six years after the incident, Lee and his supporters continued to drag MBC employees to court. But MBC won the case, and the church had to take legal responsibility for the damage done.
The Rise Of Lee Jae-Rock
Lee grew up in Muan, and he was known as a very intelligent child. At first, he lived a normal life, and things were going well until he became ill. Lee suffered from several diseases that could not be treated in time. After seven years of struggle, Lee was finally freed from his illness after experiencing a prayer session with his relatives. Lee kept making up stories about his childhood in which he convinced his followers of Jesus’s existence. In 1982, Lee Jae-Rock founded the Manmin Church and began to spread his doctrine until he completely manipulated his followers. They began to believe that Lee was God. Although the church was not very popular, Lee knew how to expand his reach with the healing rallies. Several witnesses came forward who believed that people were really healed through Lee’s prayers. In addition, Lee had performed exorcisms on several followers, and all of them seemed to have recovered to some extent. On Lee Jae-Rock’s birthday, he spent more than 500 million won on a big event.
Lee also shared his teachings at an event at Madison Square Garden in New York and then traveled to Pakistan, where he apparently healed many people with his powers. Lee claimed that all the unexplainable things were happening around the world because of him. In 2017, the U.S. was facing the devastating effects of Hurricane Irma, but Lee claimed that his prayers had tamed the hurricane. At that time, all people completely followed his instructions, and there were times when Lee also pretended to invite God everywhere. All the followers had not understood that Lee had been pretending all his life just to portray the character of a person who did not exist.