South Korean star Seungri quits his band Big Bang after being charged over prostitution ring

He posted an apology note on Instagram

One of South Korea’s most successful boyband stars has announced his retirement from showbiz, a day after he was charged with supplying prostitutes to business investors, BBC reported.

Seungri will be leaving the five-piece group Big Bang, who have sold over 140 million records since their 2006 debut and are known as the Kings of K-pop. The 28-year-old wrote on Instagram: “I have decided to retire because the controversy has become so big.”

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승리입니다 제가 이시점에서 연예계를 은퇴를하는것이 좋을거같습니다. 사회적 물의를 일으킨 사안이 너무나 커 연예계 은퇴를 결심했습니다 수사중인 사안에 있어서는 성실하게 조사를 받아 쌓인 모든 의혹을 밝히도록 하겠습니다. 지난 한달반동안 국민들로부터 질타받고 미움받고 지금 국내 모든 수사기관들이 저를 조사하고 있는 상황에서 국민역적 으로까지 몰리는 상황인데 저 하나 살자고 주변 모두에게 피해주는일은 도저히 제스스로가 용납이 안됩니다 지난 10여 년간 많은 사랑을 베풀어준 국내외 많은 팬분들께 모든 진심을 다해 감사드리며 와이지와 빅뱅 명예를 위해서라도 저는 여기까지인거같습니다 다시한번 죄송하고 또 죄송합니다 그동안 모든분들께 감사했습니다

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He has denied procuring prostitutes, the BBC said. Seungri, whose real name is Lee Seung-hyun, had already cancelled all planned engagements in February and the March shows of his solo tour.

In a statement, he apologized to his fans and promised to “sincerely participate in investigations into all allegations”. Seungri was questioned by police in February over reports of drug-taking and sexual assault at the Burning Sun club, where he was a public relations director.

File photo of South Korean star Seungri

Local media reports have linked the singer to “sex bribery” – or providing sex services to potential investors in his company Yuri Holdings, which manages his entertainment and restaurant businesses. The lobbying is alleged to have happened at nightclubs in Seoul. Prostitution is illegal in South Korea.

It is alleged that Seungri tried to obtain prostitutes for clients through a group chat on a messaging app. Messages have emerged which appear to show him urging a staff member to make the arrangements.

He was also allegedly part of a chat where secretly-filmed sex videos were shared. The hidden camera clips were allegedly taped by another K-pop singer, Jung Joon-young.  Korean broadcaster SBS reports that 10 women were filmed.