Yang Hyun-suk announces sudden resignation as YG Entertainment head

By Lim Chang-won Posted : June 14, 2019, 17:28 Updated : June 17, 2019, 14:51

[Courtesy of YG Entertainment]

SEOUL -- Yang Hyun-suk, a prominent record producer who has pulled many K-pop bands such as 2NE1, BIGBANG and BLACKPINK to the global stage, offered to resign as head of YG Entertainment, a top South Korean entertainment powerhouse, complaining about the rampant circulation of "shameful" rumors.

"As of today, I am going to put down all of my posts and duties in YG," Yang said in a statement posted on the website of his company that came two days after Kim Han-bin, known by his stage name B.I, left YG's boy band iKON for attempting to purchase drugs.

Police vowed to probe allegations that B.I had tried to purchase marijuana and LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide) in 2016. A woman, who was investigated for using drugs at that time, argued that B.I was not questioned because Yang forced her to change her testimony about the former iKON leader.

"I have patiently endured the current situation in which shameful and disgraceful words are said to be true in a reckless manner," Yang said in his statement. "But I don't think it's going to work anymore," he said, adding his agency has many capable experts who can replace him.

"My resignation will be a good opportunity for them to exercise their abilities more," Yang said, hoping for the stable operation of YG Entertainment which has been reeling from a series of scandals.

Yang, 49, was a member of Seo Taiji and Boys during the 1990s and founded his agency in 1996. YG Entertainment showed signs of recovery this month after hitting a record low of 28,300 won ($23.9) on May 27 when a TV station raised suspicions that Yang may have provided sexual services to two Southeast Asian investors in July 2014 for business favors. The agency has issued a flat denial.

A police investigation into drug use, sexual assault and violence at Burning Sun, a dance and music club associated with Seungri, a former BIGBANG member, was launched after a 28-year-old man claimed in January that he was beaten by Burning Sun employees. Seungri was accused of having used music and dance clubs to arrange sex for business favors in a bid to attract money from foreign investors.

Police also found Burning Sun employees have trafficked drugs. The investigation has exposed a sex video scandal which forced the departure of several 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.
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