Idols will not always stay their entire careers with their groups. Sometimes, they choose to leave to follow their own personal dreams, while other times, a series of events leads to them leaving their group. Here are 9 idols who left their groups in 2019, due to a scandal.
1. Kang Sunghoon leaves Sechs Kies — January 1, 2019
Kang Sunghoon officially left Sechs Kies and YG Entertainment on January 1, 2019. The decision was made after months of being on hiatus due to various scandals, such as being accused of fraud and embezzlement by his own fan club for stealing profits that were meant to be donated to charity. He was also the target of legal action after it was revealed he and his stylist attempted to break-in to his former manager’s home. The former manager even claimed he was harassed by the pair after they entered his house.
2. Seungri leaves BIGBANG — March 11, 2019
Seungri was officially removed from BIGBANG on March 11, 2019 due to his involvement in the Burning Sun Scandal. Seungri was initially connected to Burning Sun as it was discovered he was a director of the club. Soon after though, employees began to speak up about the drugs and sexual assaults that occurred at the club, and Seungri himself addressed the issues at Burning Sun.
Investigations continued however, and the discovery of a chatroom between Seungri, Yoo In Suk, and others is what sparked Korea into a frenzy. The messages detailed Seungri requesting prostitutes for a foreign investor. YG Entertainment claimed the messages were fabricated, but a reporter named Kang Kyung Yoon, who spearheaded the entire case, claimed YG was lying.
On March 10, more chat logs were revealed, showing Seungri and other celebrities sharing illegally filmed hidden camera pictures and videos, and a day later, on March 11, he announced his retirement from the entertainment industry.
Seungri continues to be under investigation, now for a total of 7 charges: soliciting prostitution for foreign investors, receiving prostitution, embezzling money from Burning Sun, and violating the Food Sanitation Act, habitual gambling, and violating the Foreign Transaction Act. . His latest arrest warrant that was requested was denied by court earlier this week.
3. Yong Junhyung leaves HIGHLIGHT — March 14, 2019
Yong Junhyung was implicated in Jung Joon Young’s chatrooms after it was revealed he was possibly one of the people involved in the chatrooms that shared illegally filmed videos and pictures. Around Us Entertainment denied the reports, saying he was never in the group chatrooms with Jung Joon Young.
Dispatch later confirmed Around Us Entertainment’s statement, saying that while Yong Junhyung was not in the group chatrooms, he was shown a video in a private 1 on 1 chat with Jung Joon Young.
On March 14, 2019, Yong Junhyung announced through his Instagram the he did participate in immoral conversations with Jung Joon Young, and he would be leaving HIGHLIGHT altogether. 2 weeks later, on April 2, 2019, Yong Junhyung silently enlisted in the military.
4. Choi Jonghoon leaves FTISLAND — March 14, 2019
Choi Jonghoon became involved in Jung Joon Young’s chatrooms after his silhouette was revealed on broadcast as one of the members in the chatroom. FNC Entertainment defended Choi Jonghoon, stating he had nothing to do with the scandal that was brewing.
That was not the only incident that plagued Choi Jonghoon though, as later reports revealed how he tried to have police cover up his drunk driving incident, to which he later admitted to but denied police collusion. At this point, FNC Entertainment stated Choi Jonghoon would be on hiatus while he undergoes investigations.
2 weeks later, Choi Jonghoon announced that he would be leaving FTISLAND and retiring from the entertainment industry. Since then, he was placed under arrest and sentenced to 5 years in prison for his crimes. He has appealed the sentence, and waiting for his appeal trial.
5. Park Yoochun leaves JYJ — April 24, 2019
Shortly after his positive drug test, his agency, C-JeS Entertainment terminated their contract with him, also signaling his departure from JYJ. His arrest warrant was approved, and he was arrested on April 26. He ended up admitting to most of the drug charges against him, and ended up being sentenced to 2 years of probation, with 10 months in prison if he violates probation.
6. B.I leaves iKON — June 12, 2019
B.I was outed by Dispatch for attempting to purchase marijuana and LSD in his past. While he did not actually use any drugs, he did admit that he had thoughts of using them, and voluntarily withdrew from iKON. YG Entertainment shortly after confirmed his contract was terminated, and he will no longer be part of iKON or the company.
The scandal grew as YG Entertainment’s involvement in the case was exposed by the media, starting with the connection between Han Seo Hee, B.I, and YG Entertainment. Han Seo Hee revealed that YG Entertainment even threatened her if she tried to implicate B.I in any way during the case, and Dispatch further revealed how Han Seo Hee and Yang Hyun Suk even met up.
7. Kangin leaves Super Junior — July 11, 2019
Kangin has not been on the good side of ELF and Koreans since his multitude of scandals. He was involved in an assault case in 2009, and the same year, he also was caught in a DUI hit-and-run incident, where he was driving under the influence of alcohol, hit a taxi, and left the scene. He then did not attend his investigation. In 2016, he was involved in his second DUI hit-and-run incident, and SM Entertainment cancelled all of his activities again.
On July 11, he announced through his Instagram account that he decided to leave Super Junior due to his actions. SM Entertainment confirmed Kangin would leave Super Junior, but his contract with SM Entertainment would still remain valid.
8. Lee Jonghyun leaves CNBLUE — August 28, 2019
Lee Jonghyun was implicated in the Jung Joon Young chatrooms after it was rumored he was part of the chatrooms. FNC Entertainment initially denied his involvement in the rooms, but SBS revealed chatlogs of him and Jung Joon Young discussing their sexual acts with different girls.
After the fallout of the Jung Joon Young chatrooms, he was again exposed by an Afreeca TV BJ for his degrading DM message towards her. Following this, FNC Entertainment released a statement confirming Lee Jonghyun would be leaving CNBLUE due to his past actions.
9. Wonho leaves MONSTA X — October 31, 2019
Wonho left MONSTA X on October 31, 2019 after a series of events involving Jung Da Eun and Han Seo Hee. Jung Da Eun claimed Wonho owed her money. Starship Entertainment denied the claims, saying Jung Da Eun’s claims are untrue, however Jung Da Eun continued to reveal things about Wonho, from the fact they lived together and he stole her possessions to sell online, or he was charged with aggravated theft.
After the revelations from Jung Da Eun, Starship Entertainment released a statement announcing Wonho’s withdrawal from MONSTA X. Wonho also wrote a letter to Monbebe apologizing for his past actions. While Monbebe continue to oppose Starship Entertainment’s decision, Dispatch released an article detailing how Wonho smoked marijuana with Jung Da Eun while he was a trainee. Currently, Wonho has not returned to the public eye since his departure from MONSTA X, and even today, fans continue to protest for he return to MONSTA X.