• Kyodo


The talent agency managing all-male pop group Tokio said Sunday it has terminated its contract with group member Tatsuya Yamaguchi, who came under fire for forcibly kissing a high school student.

Johnny & Associates made the announcement after Yamaguchi submitted his resignation letter to the other four group members on April 30. He expressed his intention to resign directly to the agency on Sunday.

The group’s leader, Shigeru Joshima, handed Yamaguchi’s resignation letter to Johnny Kitagawa, president of the agency, the same day.

The 46-year-old musician and TV personality had admitted to the allegation and was referred to prosecutors in April, but they withdrew their indictment. The girl is believed to have withdrawn her victim report after agreeing to a settlement.

A statement released by the remaining four members — Joshima, Masahiro Matsuoka, Tomoya Nagase and Taichi Kokubun — read, “Words are not enough to express our emotions.”

“If there is something that we can change, then that is the future that lies ahead of us,” the statement added.

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