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Johnny Kitagawa: Niece of late J-pop mogul cries as she apologises and steps down over sexual abuse scandal | Ents & Arts Information

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The niece of a strong Japanese pop mogul discovered to have sexually abused a whole bunch of younger performers has publicly apologised and stepped down from operating the expertise company he based.

A tearful Julie Keiko Fujishima introduced her resignation as president of Johnny & Associates, the company arrange by her late uncle Johnny Kitagawa, at a information convention in Tokyo on Thursday. She additionally promised to contribute to a compensation fund for victims from her personal fortune.

Kitagawa, who died in 2019 aged 87, was the person behind the most important expertise company in Japan‘s pop music business. He was by no means charged over the allegations and the scandal, which emerged totally earlier this 12 months, has shocked the nation.

Johnny Kitagawa died in 2019. Pic: Kyodo through AP

The boys who got here ahead say Kitagawa raped, fondled and abused them whereas they had been working for his firm as dancers and singers. 9 males had fashioned a bunch demanding an apology and monetary compensation.

In August, an inside investigation concluded that he sexually abused younger performers from way back to the Fifties.

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“That is what my uncle dedicated, and as a niece, I wish to take duty,” Ms Fujishima stated solemnly, going through reporters to make the announcement.

She stated she would keep on the corporate’s board to see by means of a sufferer compensation programme.

At one level, she choked again tears, stressing the achievements of the corporate’s singers and dancers. “I solely really feel deep gratitude to all of the followers,” she stated.

Kitagawa had been so highly effective that she, and lots of others, had saved silent, she added.

‘A horrendous crime’

One alleged sufferer advised reporters he was happy with the apology however nonetheless had reservations.

“The injuries in my coronary heart is not going to heal,” he stated. “However I really feel somewhat higher.”

One other man who got here ahead not too long ago stated he was routinely molested earlier than Kitagawa had even arrange his firm, aged simply eight.

Based in 1962, Johnny & Associates has an enormous cultural presence in Japan, producing a number of the hottest names in J-pop together with SMAP and Arashi, bands with huge fan bases throughout East Asia.

Noriyuki Higashiyama, a former member of the hit Eighties boy-band Shonentai, has been named as the brand new head of the company.

“A horrendous crime has been dedicated,” Higashiyama advised reporters. “It’ll take time to win again belief, and I’m placing my life on the road for this effort.”

Guinness World Data stated it had stripped Kitagawa of all of the data he had held, equivalent to primary hits, in response to its coverage towards “criminals”.

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