The South Korean star denies the charges
Seungri, a member of K-pop boy band Big Bang, has announced that he’s retiring music following charges of supplying prostitutes.
In a post on Instagram the singer announced that he has “decided to retire from the entertainment industry” in order to protect Big Bang and their backers YG Entertainment.
According to Variety, the charges could potentially lead to a jail sentence of three years and were brought following a police raid on a Seoul nightclub that the singer controls.
“We booked Seungri and changed his status to that of a suspect in order to issue a search and seizure warrant and clear [him] of the suspicions,” a police spokesman said at a press conference.
The Variety report notes that Seungri has been in Korean headlines throughout 2019 after a video of an assault in his nightclub circulated online. It sparked Seoul police to announce that they would investigate the club over allegations that it was supplying drugs to patrons and women for VIP customers to have sex with.
In February a series of text messages emerged in which Seungri and three other people allegedly discuss supplying prostitutes to potential investors at the club.
Seungri has denied all the allegations and had accused the journalist who published the texts of falsifying evidence. A number of the pop star’s upcoming concerts across Asia have been cancelled.
Korean media has reported that employees at YG Entertainment have been spotted throwing out large quantities of shredded material. The company has denied that it was destroying potential evidence and said that the clear-out was a routine quarterly procedure.
Seungri had been due to begin his term of mandatory service in the South Korean military at the end of March. It’s unclear whether this will be affected by the ongoing legal issues.