Riize member Anton rumored to be dating noncelebrity friend

Anton of boy band Riize [NEWS1]

Just six months into its debut, boy band Riize faces yet another scandal.

A photo of a man alleged to be Riize member Anton holding hands with a woman circulated social media and sparked dating rumors on Monday. The photo, posted on Sunday, was a screen capture of an Instagram Highlight with a caption reading “welcome home.”
The woman in the photo is a noncelebrity friend of Anton's who lives in New Jersey, according to local reports.

The user who uploaded the photo to Instagram, who is also the woman pictured, confirmed Tuesday that the man was Anton but dismissed claims that the two were dating.

A post clearing up dating rumors between Anton and the woman he was alleged to have been pictured holding hands with was posted on Tuesday. [SCREEN CAPTURE]

“I am not and have not ever dated him,” the woman clarified through her Instagram page on Tuesday.

“Anton and I have been friends since we were young,” the user added. “We were in a group setting with other close friends of ours and continued to hang out in group settings throughout the day.”

“Seeing Anton is not as easy as it once was, and he had come home for the first time in years. To remember that day, I posted that photo, obviously on my private Instagram.”

An Instagram account alleged to be Riize member Anton's private account surfaced on social media. [SCREEN CAPTURE]

After the photo emerged, online users speculated that an account with the username “ilovesamsungsomuch” was Anton's private Instagram account, claiming that it was followed by people with known connections to the Riize member.

Online users criticized the handle for being offensive to Koreans.

“’I love Samsung so much’ is what a foreign-born Korean says to make fun of Koreans,” one user of X, formerly Twitter, complained.

“Not only is he a nepo baby, the I love Samsung shows his values as a foreign-born Korean,” another said.

The scandal surrounding Anton and his alleged “anti-Korean” stance also revitalized previous military-related controversies regarding the singer's father, Yoon Sang.

Rumors have previously circulated in Korea that Yoon acquired Argentine citizenship to avoid mandatory military service after the singer-songwriter suddenly quit his DJ role on a popular MBC radio program in October 1993, at the height of his popularity. It was later revealed that the singer had indeed gotten Argentine citizenship in May 1992, and the Military Manpower Administration launched an investigation into his potential draft evasion.

The investigation was dropped after Yoon began military service in 1993. The artist's Argentine citizenship was revoked with his military entry, and he received his Korean citizenship back.