Crime & Justice

K-pop star Seungri sentenced to 3 years on multiple charges

Seoul, Aug 12 (EFE).- Seungri, a former member of the K-pop band BigBang, was on Thursday sentenced to three years in prison by a military court that found him guilty of nine different charges, including embezzlement and for acting as a mediator in a prostitution service.

The 30-year-old singer, whose real name is Lee Seung-hyun, was tried by a military court in Yongin, south of Seoul, given that had enlisted in the South Korean navy in March last year, a couple of months after being formally charged with a series of crimes.

The charges also included illegally operating a nightclub and participating in gambling abroad, both considered a crime in South Korea.

The court ordered his immediate arrest and a fine of 1.15 billion won (about $990,000).

Seungri retired from the entertainment industry in March 2019 after becoming a central figure in an investigation around Gangnam district club Burning Sun in Seoul, thought to have harbored drug trafficking, underage prostitution, tax evasion and police corruption activities.

Lee was charged with providing prostitution services to potential investors in Japan, Taiwan and Hong Kong between 2015 and 2016.

He was also accused of embezzling some 528 million won from his nightclub and gambling regularly in Las Vegas between 2013 and 2017.

In January this year, he was also accused of sending members of organized crime groups to threaten people with whom he had a bar fight in 2015.

Seungri denied most of the charges during the trial and the military prosecutor’s office had originally asked for five years in prison on the grounds that he showed no remorse.

In the second half of the last decade, the singer was selected by the production company YG Entertainment to join the male band Bigbang, and enjoyed great success.

In 2008 he also began to perform solo, while also appearing regularly on television and working as an actor in South Korean and Japanese productions. EFE


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