Prosecutors ask court to sentence ex-Big Bang’s Seungri to 5 years in prison

Published July 2, 2021, 2:29 PM

by Jonathan Hicap

Seungri (Instagram) 

Embattled Korean celebrity Seungri, former member of K-pop boy band Big Bang, must be put in jail for five years if prosecutors have their way. 

Military prosecutors have asked a general military court to sentence Seungri to five years in prison for different charges and impose a fine of 20 million won ($17,641). The court is located at the ground operations command in Yongin, Gyeonggi Province, South Korea. 

Seungri, who enlisted in the military in March last year, is facing nine charges before the military court: prostitution mediation in violation of Act on the Punishment of Arrangement of Commercial Sex Acts Etc., embezzlement, overseas gambling, procuring prostitution service, violation of Foreign Exchange Transactions Act, violation of Food Sanitation Act, violation of the Act on Special Cases Concerning The Punishment, Etc. of Sexual Crimes, violation of an Act on the Aggravated Punishment Etc. of Specific Economic Crimes and mobilizing gang to threaten people. He has denied the charges. 

Previously, a court sentenced Yoo In-suk, Seungri’s business partner, to 20 months in prison suspended for three years for charges such as embezzlement and prostitution mediation.

Seungri’s woes started in January 2019 when the Burning Sun club controversy started after a man complained that he was assaulted outside the venue located in Gangnam, Seoul. 

This snowballed into an investigation about the club’s activities and management including Seungri, who announced on March 11, 2019 that he was retiring from the entertainment industry because of various issues. 

“I have decided to retire from the entertainment industry as the issues that caused social controversy are so great,” he said then.

YG Entertainment announced two days later that it had terminated Seungri’s exclusive contract upon the singer’s request.