K-pop star held on drug charges in latest scandal

SEOUL, April 26 (Reuters) - K-pop and drama star Park Yu-chun was arrested on Friday on charges of buying and using illegal drugs, a court said, the latest in a series of scandals to hit the South Korean entertainment business.

Suwon District Court approved the arrest warrant for Park, 32, due to concerns over possible destruction of evidence and flight risk, a court spokesman told Reuters.

Park is suspected of having bought about 1.5 grams of methamphetamine with his former girlfriend earlier this year and using the drug around five times, an official at the Gyeonggi Nambu Provincial Police Agency said.

Park has denied wrongdoing, saying he had never taken drugs, and he again denied the charges in court, Yonhap news agency said.

Related: K-pop stars perform in Pyongyang

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K-pop stars perform in Pyongyang
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K-pop stars perform in Pyongyang
South Korean musicians take a rehearsal for a rare concert at the 1,500-seat East Pyongyang Grand Theatre in Pyongyang on April 1, 2018. Top South Korean musical acts including a K-pop girlband are set to hold a rare concert in North Korea on April 1 evening in the latest reconciliatory gesture before a rare inter-Korean summit. / AFP PHOTO / KOREA POOL / - / South Korea OUT (Photo credit should read -/AFP/Getty Images)
South Korean video crew check a rehearsal of a concert by South Korean musicians at the 1,500-seat East Pyongyang Grand Theatre in Pyongyang on April 1, 2018. Top South Korean musical acts including a K-pop girlband are set to hold a rare concert in North Korea on April 1 evening in a latest reconciliatory gesture ahead of a historic inter-Korea summit. / AFP PHOTO / KOREA POOL / KOREA POOL / South Korea OUT (Photo credit should read KOREA POOL/AFP/Getty Images)
South Korean video crew check a rehearsal of a concert by South Korean musicians at the 1,500-seat East Pyongyang Grand Theatre in Pyongyang on April 1, 2018. Top South Korean musical acts including a K-pop girlband are set to hold a rare concert in North Korea on April 1 evening in a latest reconciliatory gesture ahead of a historic inter-Korea summit. / AFP PHOTO / KOREA POOL / KOREA POOL / South Korea OUT (Photo credit should read KOREA POOL/AFP/Getty Images)
Members of K-pop girlband 'Red Velvet' pose for a photo after a rehearsal for a rare concert at the 1,500-seat East Pyongyang Grand Theatre in Pyongyang on April 1, 2018. Top South Korean musical acts including a K-pop girlband are set to hold a rare concert in North Korea on April 1 evening in the latest reconciliatory gesture before a rare inter-Korean summit. / AFP PHOTO / KOREA POOL / - / South Korea OUT (Photo credit should read -/AFP/Getty Images)
This picture from North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) taken on March 31, 2018 and released on April 1, 2018 shows South Korea's Culture Minister Do Jong-hwan (4th L) shaking hands with his North Korean counterpart Pak Chun-nam (3rd R) at Pyongyang airport. K-pop stars led a group of South Korean musicians arriving in Pyongyang on March 31 to take part in the latest set of cross-border cultural performances ahead of next month's rare inter-Korean summit. / AFP PHOTO / KCNA VIA KNS / - / South Korea OUT / REPUBLIC OF KOREA OUT ---EDITORS NOTE--- RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT 'AFP PHOTO/KCNA VIA KNS' - NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS THIS PICTURE WAS MADE AVAILABLE BY A THIRD PARTY. AFP CAN NOT INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE AUTHENTICITY, LOCATION, DATE AND CONTENT OF THIS IMAGE. THIS PHOTO IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY AFP. / (Photo credit should read -/AFP/Getty Images)
This picture from North Korea's official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) taken on March 31, 2018 and released on April 1, 2018 shows a group of South Korean musicians posing after arriving at Pyongyang airport. K-pop stars led a group of South Korean musicians arriving in Pyongyang on March 31 to take part in the latest set of cross-border cultural performances ahead of next month's rare inter-Korean summit. / AFP PHOTO / KCNA VIA KNS / - / South Korea OUT / REPUBLIC OF KOREA OUT ---EDITORS NOTE--- RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT 'AFP PHOTO/KCNA VIA KNS' - NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS THIS PICTURE WAS MADE AVAILABLE BY A THIRD PARTY. AFP CAN NOT INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE AUTHENTICITY, LOCATION, DATE AND CONTENT OF THIS IMAGE. THIS PHOTO IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY AFP. / (Photo credit should read -/AFP/Getty Images)
The exterior of the 1,500-seat East Pyongyang Grand Theatre is seen in Pyongyang on April 1, 2018. Top South Korean musical acts including a K-pop girlband are set to hold a rare concert in North Korea on April 1 evening in a latest reconciliatory gesture ahead of a historic inter-Korea summit. / AFP PHOTO / KOREA POOL / KOREA POOL / South Korea OUT (Photo credit should read KOREA POOL/AFP/Getty Images)
A man walks through the lobby of the 1,500-seat East Pyongyang Grand Theatre in Pyongyang on April 1, 2018. Top South Korean musical acts including a K-pop girlband are set to hold a rare concert in North Korea on April 1 evening in a latest reconciliatory gesture ahead of a historic inter-Korea summit. / AFP PHOTO / KOREA POOL / KOREA POOL / South Korea OUT (Photo credit should read KOREA POOL/AFP/Getty Images)
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Park's contract with his management agency had been canceled and he would leave the entertainment industry, Park's management agency, C-JeS Entertainment, said on Wednesday.

Park was a member of boyband TVXQ between 2003 and 2009 before leaving the group with two other members, forming the group JYJ.

A scandal involving sex tapes, prostitutes and secret chat about rape led at least four other K-pop stars to quit the industry earlier this year.

The cases sparked a nationwide drugs bust and investigations into tax evasion and police collusion at night clubs and other nightlife spots. (Reporting by Joyce Lee; Additional reporting by Heekyong Yang; Editing by Nick Macfie)

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