Composer Don Spike convicted for drug abuse; sentenced to three years imprisonment

Don Spike (image via @hyunnibae/Twitter)
Don Spike (image via @hyunnibae/Twitter)

Internationally renowned K-pop music composer Don Spike was sentenced to three years of suspended jail time after being found guilty of possession and abuse of drugs. On January 9, the Seoul Northern District Court held the first trial of the artist for violating several laws prohibiting the possession and use of psychotropic and narcotic substances, including the Act on Aggravated Punishment of Specific Crimes.

In addition to three years of imprisonment, the 45-year-old musician has been awarded five years of probation and eighty hours of drug awareness classes for his rehabilitation. Additionally, he has been mandated to perform 120 hours of community service and is required to pay a hefty fine of 40 million won.

According to the court order, Don Spike was given a sentence that was less severe than the five-year term that was sought by the prosecution. He admitted his guilt during an earlier stage of the judicial proceedings, and multiple petitions were presented by his family and others who were close to him. The judgment read:

“The solidarity shown by his family and people close to him has been taken into consideration (in the ruling) as it could prevent repeated criminal offenses.”

Don Spike had purchased over 45 million won worth of drugs since 2021

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On September 28, 2022, Kim Min-su, better known by his stage name Don Spike, was arrested at a hotel in Gangnam District, Seoul, on charges of violating the Drug Control Act. The artist purchased methamphetamine worth 45 million won and has allegedly used it recreationally more than fourteen times.

According to the order of the District Court of Northern Seoul, Min-su had acquired over a hundred grams of meth and had induced several people to indulge in recreational drug abuse. Explaining the rationale behind the penalty imposed on the artist, the order read:

"The defendant had purchased over 100 grams of methamphetamine and induced multiple people into abusing the drug, weighing on the gravity of the offenses."

Under Korean law, owning, producing, or using narcotics with a street value of at least 5 million won but less than 50 million won carries a minimum jail sentence of three years. For narcotics possession worth over 50 million won, the minimum sentence is seven years in prison.


Upon his detention by the authorities, Don Spike spoke to the press and revealed that the charges were true. During the court hearing that took place in December, Kim Min-su pleaded guilty to the charges levied against him.

At the time of his arrest, he possessed thirty grams of drugs, which is adequate for over six hundred uses.

This marks the third occasion of drug abuse charges against Spike. In 2010, he was given a punishment of 5 million won for his continued misuse of cannabis.

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Don Spike is a popular musician who is credited for the composition and arrangement of a number of K-pop songs for various performers. Among the most notable musicians who have worked with Spike is the sensational K-pop boy band EXO. Besides his work in the entertainment industry, Spike also owned the BBQ joint known as Low & Slow.

According to reports, Don Spike is currently imprisoned at the Seoul Dongbu Detention Center.

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Edited by Somava
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