Choi Seung Hyun, also known as T.O.P., from one of South Korea’s iconic boy groups, Big Bang, has finally admitted to the charges of smoking marijuana in his home on October of last year. Earlier reports revealed that a female acquaintance was with him during the incident. Initially, the Big Bang rapper denied allegations that he smoked marijuana saying it was just an electronic cigarette. However, the acquaintance admitted to the charges filed against her which eventually led the K-Pop star to follow suit. The female acquaintance involved was identified to be a 22-year-old trainee named Han Seo Hee. She was a contestant on the now defunct reality search show of MBC, Birth of A Great Star 3.
T.O.P’s label, YG Entertainment, has released a statement regarding the issue.
“Hello. This is YG Entertainment. Firstly, we relay our deepest apologies. After confirming with T.O.P, we have confirmed that as reported, during his military service, he was summoned to be investigated for smoking marijuana before his enlistment. He has finished with all of the investigations diligently, and in the investigation process, he has admitted to most of the allegations and is reflecting deeply. We are sorry once again for worrying many people.”
This is not the first drug-related incident or controversy that artists from YG Entertainment got involved in. Back in 2011, another big bang member, Kwon Jiyong, or more popularly known as G-Dragon or GD, has also been dragged into a marijuana scandal. The Big Bang leader, however, was able to get away with the scandal. A year later, through an SBS show called Healing Camp, G-Dragon finally spoke up about the incident. He said that after the concert they had in Japan, they were celebrating and many people were present in the party. He received a cigarette from a stranger and due to intoxication; he was unable to tell that it was not just a regular cigarette. He thought though that it was stronger than the usual.
“We hosted the party ourselves, and we were in a really good mood because the concert went really well. At that moment, I had a lot to drink, and my managers were doing their own thing, and I was alone. I went to the restroom, and someone offered me a cigarette. I thought it would be rude to refuse, so I accepted it without giving it a second thought.”
Big Bang’s former labelmate, Park Bom, has also been under drug controversy in 2014 for illegally trying to smuggle Amphetamine. Her involvement with it caused another iconic K-Pop girl group 2ne1 to prolong their hiatus which eventually led to the formal disbandment of the group last year. Park Bom’s case charges, after much investigation, have been eventually dropped by the prosecution.
Rumors now are circulating that YG Entertainment has someone in the government intervening for them, and helping the label get their artists’ name cleared from all charges and controversies. Choi Soon Shil’s name, who used to be the aide of former South Korean President Park Geun-Hye, is now being dragged into this controversy with allegations of him being a YG protector. It is said that Choi has shares in the company. But many say that with the recent impeachment of President Park, Choi Soon Shil can no longer intervene and this is the reason why T.O.P has been charged.
Since February, T.O.P has been on his military duties serving at Gangnam Police Station. A police authority said however that T.O.P is not allowed to leave the barracks and a disciplinary action will be given after investigations have been done.
T.O.P is a popular K-Pop Icon who has amassed a very large fan base across Asia. He is a rapper, a singer, and an actor who has appeared in multiple TV shows, music shows, movies, and has performed in many concerts all over the world as a member of K-Pop boy group Big Bang.
[Featured Image by Kin Cheung/AP Images]