SEOUL, June 7 (Yonhap) — The family of T.O.P, a member of South Korean boy band BIGBANG who was hospitalized for an apparent drug overdose, on Wednesday disputed an earlier police account of the singer’s health, claiming he was in much worse condition.
“The condition of my son is quite bad. It’s been misreported after (the police) announced that my boy, who is almost dying, was not fully awake from tranquilizers,” T.O.P’s mother told reporters while sobbing at Ewha Womans University Medical Center in western Seoul.
The mother, who was clearly distressed, was also seen telling a nearby police official, “He was clearly unconscious when moved to the hospital. The doctor confirmed it.”
The 29-year-old rapper, whose real name is Choi Seung-hyun, was hospitalized Tuesday and is currently receiving treatment at an intensive care unit. YG first reported that Choi was found unconscious, but police later denied that he was in critical condition.
A representative at YG Entertainment said, “The mother was very angry at the police report. T.O.P is currently unconscious and relying on a respirator. She’s flabbergasted by the police report that said he was ‘in a state of sleep’ when hospitalized.”
Police said Tuesday that T.O.P appeared to have overdosed on tranquilizers that he has been taking for medical reasons. An official said that Choi wasn’t in “critical condition” and said he is just sleeping since the medication contained sleeping pill ingredients.
The incident occurred just a day after he was indicted without detention on charges of smoking marijuana. Seoul prosecutors on Wednesday announced that Choi is suspected of smoking the banned substance four times with a 21-year-old would-be singer, only identified by her surname Han, at his home in Seoul in October last year.
Choi has been serving his mandatory military service as a conscripted policeman since February. He had worked at the Gangnam Police Station in Seoul but was transferred to a different police corps in eastern Seoul following his indictment.
His military service period will be put on hold until a court reaches a verdict. If he receives a jail term of 18 months or more, he will be dishonorably discharged from the service.