A man who was shot and robbed on Friday in Los Angeles’s Koreatown may have had ties to a Korean royal family member.
The shooting occurred around 4:20 p.m. outside the luxury Kurve apartment complex. The LAPD said two male suspects fled the scene.
The victim drove a Rolls-Royce Phantom that is registered to Korean prince Andrew Lee, according to ABC 7. The suspect shot the man and took his Rolex watch as well as three metal chains of unknown material.
Lee, an entrepreneur, is the crown prince of Korea’s royal family and founder of London Trust Media, a VPN security service. It remains unknown whether he was the victim or whether he was in the car at the time of the robbery.
Police described the victim as a man between 25 and 30 years old, though the prince is almost 40. The victim was conscious and breathing after the shooting but later went to hospital in critical condition.
Lee was born and raised in Indiana and studied at Purdue University and the State University of New York at Buffalo before dropping out to start his company.
His life changed in 2018 when Korea’s Imperial Highness King Yi Seok identified Lee as a relative and declared him the family’s crown prince. The declaration occurred at a lavish Passing of the Sword ceremony in Los Angeles, according to SCMP.
Lee and his family then moved into a mansion in Thousand Oaks.
The Korean Royal Family holds no true power but still receives media attention as well as “preference and recognition” within the country. The family descends from the Joseon dynasty, which ruled the country for five centuries before Japan annexed the country.
The family “does not stake claim” to the country, but it continues to serve a role in “symbolic, cultural and historical activities.”