Troubled singer and entertainer Shin Jung-hwan does not wish to return to Korea, his agency announced Wednesday.
IS Enter Media Group said that Shin's manager visited the 35-year-old Shin in Cebu, Philippines and asked him to explain what has been going on but Shin did not answer. Shin's final decision, however, was that he presently has no desire to return to Korea, according to the manager.
"After confirming that Shin had his passport with him, the manager tried to persuade him to return to Korea but Shin said that he wants to take some time off, away from everything. It was difficult to figure out what exactly had happened because he kept silent, but there appeared to be no risk to his safety or health," said the agency.
"The manager informed Shin that suspicions will heat up if he does not apologize and explain to the public in person, but Shin left the hotel with his acquaintances there on Sunday morning and is no longer in contact," added the agency.
Shin left for Hong Kong on Monday morning, according to reports.
Shin's agency told MBC's "Radio Star" and "Flower Bouquet" on Tuesday that Shin is dropping out from the programs and MBC accepted the withdrawal.
Shin flew to Cebu on Aug. 27 and stayed at a resort casino hotel, missing the taping of TV programs in Seoul without prior notice, evoking rumors that his stay there was linked to his gambling debt.
He claimed last Wednesday that he had been hospitalized with dengue fever the whole time after simply visiting the casinos as a part of sightseeing. However, a doctor at the Cebu Hospital was quoted as saying by local media that Shin was currently well.
Meanwhile, the Seoul Central District Prosecutors Office on Tuesday began an investigation into Shin's alleged illegal overseas gambling in the Philippines.
The entertainer was banned from TV appearances in 2005 when he was charged with illegal gambling. Last year, he was sued by one of his acquaintances for taking 180 million won fraudulently.
source: The Korea Herald