T.O.P’s military service suspended over marijuana scandal

South Korean singer and actor T.O.P of boy band BIGBANG, who is serving his mandatory military service as a conscripted policeman, leaves his workplace in Seoul surrounded by reporters questioning his marijuana charges on June, 5, 2017. (Yonhap)

SEOUL, June 9 (Yonhap) — T.O.P of South Korean boy band BIGBANG on Friday was officially suspended of his mandatory military service after being indicted for smoking marijuana on multiple occasions.

T.O.P, whose real name is Choi Seung-hyun, is suspected of smoking the banned substance four times with a 21-year-old female trainee singer at his home in Seoul in October last year.

Singer-rapper T.O.P’s mother (R) arrives at an intensive care unit of Ewha Womans University Medical Center in western Seoul on June 8, 2017, where her son is hospitalized for a drug overdose. (Yonhap)

The singer, who began his military service as a conscripted policeman in February, was indicted Monday. He was hospitalized the following day from an apparent overdose of benzodiazepine at a police unit in eastern Seoul.

Police regulation mandates the suspension of duty for conscripted policemen when indicted on criminal charges.

An official at the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency said, “Choi will be sent home immediately.”

“We’ve suspended Choi of his duty after receiving the original indictment document from prosecutors,” the official added.

T.O.P’s 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.

In the case of a weaker verdict, T.O.P will become eligible for a police review on whether he is fit to serve at the police again. If he fails to pass the review, T.O.P would be discharged from the police and be forced to finish his military duty as a public service worker.



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