Kim Jong-un 'spent over $600m in a year' while North Korean citizens starved to death

North Korea's spending on luxury goods has more than doubled under Kim

North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un splashed millions of dollars on luxury items including dozens of pianos and Mercedes-Benz cars, a UN report has revealed.

The 372-page report said the country continues to allocate a "significant amount of state resources for the purchase and important of luxury goods" while hunger and malnutrition take a heavy toll on the population.

According to the report, North Korea's spending on luxury goods has more than doubled from an average of $300 million a year to $646 million in 2012, when Kim assumed control following his father's death, Kim Jong-il.

Kim reportedly treated himself to a dozen of luxury cars, top quality pianos and a private theatre for his closest allies and top aides.

These items violate UN sanctions imposed on North Korea prohibiting "the provision of luxury goods" adopted in 2007.

The report did not examine how the items were imported into the country.

A former North Korean official who managed to escape the country said Kim funded his lavish lifestyle by trafficking ivory from Africa to China and selling alcohol to Islamic countries.

The money was transferred into parallel funds outside of the state budget to cover "personal expenses of the Supreme leader, his family and other elites".

Revenue from criminal activities stood at $500 million a year in 2008, amounting to one third of North Korea's annual exports, according to the UN.

The scathing report follows a year-long investigation, compiled from public hearings with more than 80 victims and witnesses, detailing the "unspeakable atrocities" being committed in North Korea including murder, rape, forced abortions, torture and enslavement.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Home Care / Support Workers

£7 - £10 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This care provider is looking for Home ...

Recruitment Genius: Web Team Leader

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the UK's leading web des...

Recruitment Genius: Client Manager

£27000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A growing, successful, friendly...

Recruitment Genius: Property Negotiator - OTE £20,000+

£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This family owned, independent ...

Day In a Page

Greece says 'No': A night of huge celebrations in Athens as voters decisively back Tsipras and his anti-austerity stance in historic referendum

Greece referendum

Greeks say 'No' to austerity and plunge Europe into crisis
Ten years after the 7/7 terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?

7/7 bombings anniversary

Ten years after the terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?
Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has created

Versace haute couture review

Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has ever created
No hope and no jobs, so Gaza's young risk their lives, climb the fence and run for it

No hope and no jobs in Gaza

So the young risk their lives and run for it
Fashion apps: Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers

Fashion apps

Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers
The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate