Former BigBang member Seungri completes 18-month jail term
SEOUL – Seungri, a former member of K-pop boy band BigBang, was released from Yeoju Prison in South Korea’s Gyeonggi province on Thursday after completing his 18-month sentence, according to the country’s Ministry of Justice.
Seungri, whose real name is Lee Seung-hyun, was indicted in January 2020 over his involvement in the Burning Sun scandal, a far-reaching sex and drug scandal, since 2018.
The 32-year-old singer began his military service during the trial and was sentenced to three years in prison in a military court in August 2021. The punishment was mitigated to 18 months in the higher court and the term was finalised in the Supreme Court in May 2022.
Seungri was convicted on nine charges, including arranging sex trafficking for foreign investors in 2015 and misappropriating funds from Burning Sun, a nightclub in Gangnam to which he was affiliated.
The court also found him guilty of eight accounts of illicit gambling involving some 2.2 billion won (S$2.3 million) between 2013 and 2017.
Two other former entertainers were also convicted in the Burning Sun scandal.
Choi Jong-hoon, formerly of K-pop group FT Island, was released in 2021 after two years and six months in prison. South Korean singer Jung Joon-young’s prison term ends in October 2025.
Seungri began his career as a member of BigBang in 2006, drawing global fame with a number of hits.
He left the group – which now consists of G-Dragon, T.O.P, Taeyang and Daesung – in 2019 after the scandal broke. THE KOREA HERALD/ASIA NEWS NETWORK
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