Court refuses to issue arrest warrant for disgraced BIGBANG member Seungri

Lim Chang-won Reporter Posted : 2019-05-15 08:57 Updated : 2019-05-15 08:57
글씨작게 글씨크게

Seungri, a disgraced BIGBANG member with his hands tied up, is escorted out of a Seoul court which examined the validity of his warrant on May 14. [Photo by Yoo Dae-gil =]

SEOUL -- Seungri, a disgraced BIGBANG member, avoided being shackled after a court refused to issue a writ, citing no worries about the destruction of evidence and a legal dispute over embezzlement charges. Without being detained, he may stand trial with his business partner accused of arranging sex favors for foreign investors.

In an examination to determine the validity of a warrant sought by prosecutors, a Seoul court for habeas corpus said on Tuesday night that it could not acknowledge the need and significance of Seungri's arrest because there are no worries about stifling evidence. "It is difficult to acknowledge the reason for imprisonment, such as destruction of evidence."

Seungri and his business partner, Yoo In-seok, who founded Yuri Holdings together for investment in restaurant and entertainment businesses, were accused of having used music and dance clubs to arrange sex services for business favors in a bid to attract money from foreign investors.

"There is room for dispute over the existence and scope of criminal responsibility," the court said over accusations that Seungri and Yoo have embezzled about 530 million won ($445,380) from Burning Sun, a dance and music club associated with the 28-year-old singer-businessman.

Seungri has been the target of public criticism since a 28-year-old dance club customer claimed in January that he was brutally beaten by Burning Sun employees.

A police investigation exposed drug trafficking by Burning Sun employees and a sex video scandal that forced the departure of celebrities from South Korea's music community. Jung Joon-young, a singer-songwriter, was arrested on charges of sharing illegally filmed sex video files with Seungri and other artists.

One Burning Sun employee was accused of using drugs with the ex-girlfriend of Park Yoo-chun, an expelled JYJ member who was arrested on April 26 for taking methamphetamine.