BIGBANG's Seungri offers to retire amid snowballing allegations

BIGBANG's Seungri offers to retire amid snowballing allegations

This photo taken on March 3, 2013 shows Seungri (R), a member of the popular South Korean boyband Big Bang, arriving at the country's main airport after finishing the band's tour in China.

The K-pop star, whose real name is Lee Seung-hyun, apologized to his fans and said he had been branded a "traitor to the nation". In a statement he apologised to his fans, and promised to "sincerely participate in investigations into all allegations", reported BBC.

The search stems from leaked Kakaotalk messages from 2015 that are alleged to be between Seungri, CEO Yoo of Yuri Holdings, and a club employee.

The club closed down earlier this month.

Seungri has denied the allegations, but if he's convicted he could face up to three years in prison. Representatives of YG Entertainment Inc., which manages Big Bang, weren't immediately available for comment.

Prostitution is illegal in South Korea. "I will cooperate (with the) ongoing investigation and clarify every suspicion", he wrote on Instagram.

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Seungri isn't the first member of Big Bang to be embroiled in controversy, however.

"And I can't let this cause further damage to others".

"I give my heartfelt, honest thanks to fans at home and overseas who gave their love for the past 10 years, and I think this should be it for the sake of the reputation of YG (Entertainment) and BIGBANG", Seungri said in the Instagram post.

Rapper T.O.P received a suspended jail sentence in 2017 for smoking marijuana multiple times after he was hospitalised for a drug overdose.

In 2016, Forbes magazine named G-Dragon as the most influential person under 30 in Asia's entertainment and sports industries. On Friday, the agency said the singer would join the army this month to fulfill his military duties.

Media captionWhat do non-Koreans love about K-pop?

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