K-pop star Seungri quits showbiz after allegations of sexual bribery

Big Bang's Seungri announces retirement amid controversy

Singer Seungri of South Korean boy band Big Bang has been accused of "sexual bribery" at a night club he controls. His retirement comes with immediate effect and Seungri will be leaving the band which has sold over 140 million records since their 2006 debut and are known as the "Kings of K-pop".

Stocks of talent agencies took a plunge Monday after Yonhap News named Seungri, nicknamed "Korea's Great Gatsby" for his opulent lifestyle, as a suspect in the probe involving prostitutes at clubs in the Gangnam area in Seoul.

Seungri shares a message with fans about why he's leaving the industry
Seungri thanks his fans for their support as he quits the music industry. Instagram

Other allegations surrounding Seungri also include suspicion that frequent drug use occurred at Burning Sun, the nightclub where the singer had been an executive director, and that club officials have bribed police.

Seungri rose to fame as part of Big Bang, one of the most popular K-pop groups yet. Prostitution is illegal in South Korea. His last statement said that his decision to remove himself is because he doesn't want to do damage to BIGBANG and YG, so he is retiring for their sake.

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It is alleged that Seungri tried to obtain prostitutes for clients through a group chat on the messaging app KakaoTalk in 2015.

Seungri isn't the first member of Big Bang to be embroiled in controversy, however. I personally can not tolerate causing harm to everyone around me in order to save myself.

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Band leader G-Dragon was also investigated for smoking marijuana in 2011, although he was released without indictment.

He apologized to fans and said he could not "tolerate causing harm to everyone around me in order to save myself". When it began, he got such a deluge of supportive letters that his army base ran out of paper to print them on, and fans had to be urged to show restraint.

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Still Seungri is reportedly scheduled to enlist in the military on March 25, despite the ongoing investigation.

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