SEOUL, South Korea — Seungri, the disgraced K-pop singer, was sentenced to three years in jail by a South Korean military court on Thursday for offenses such as supplying prostitutes to foreign businesses.
The former member of the boy band Big Bang has additionally penalized 1.15 billion won ($989,000), according to the Defense Ministry. After a decision by an army court in Yongin, outside Seoul, he was brought into the jail.
Seungri, whose actual name is Lee Seung-hyun, was charged with several counts in January 2020, including organizing unlawful sexual services for business investors from Taiwan, Japan, and Hong Kong between 2015 and 2016. From 2013 to 2017, he was found guilty of embezzling cash from a Seoul nightclub he owned and of breaking rules forbidding offshore gambling by betting excessively at international casinos. He rejected the majority of the allegations.
After enlisting in the army in March last year for 21 months of military duty, a necessity for most able-bodied males in South Korea due to the danger from neighboring North Korea, his case was transferred to a military court.
According to the Yonhap news agency, Seungri arrived in court dressed in a battle uniform and shook his head repeatedly when the judge read the decision.
Seungri was one of the greatest performers in K-pop until his demise, thanks to the popularity of the Big Bang, which drew massive audiences in Asia and other areas of the world after its debut in 2006. According to Forbes magazine, the company generated $44 million in pretax profits the prior year.
After being found guilty of illegal sexual intercourse with a lady who was unable to resist, singer Jung Joon-young received a six-year jail sentence and former boy band member Choi Jong-hoon received a five-year sentence in 2019.