• Kyodo, Staff Report


Keisuke Koide, a popular actor with a clean-cut image, has been suspended by his talent agency after admitting to having sex with a minor, forcing major broadcasters to cancel a program starring him and remove him from the cast of an upcoming TV program.

“It happened because I, as an adult and public figure, failed to have a sense of responsibility and fully control myself. My deed was inexcusable,” Koide, 33, said in a statement Thursday ahead of the publication Friday of a gossip magazine covering the scandal.

The magazine’s report says Koide drank alcohol last month with a 17-year-old girl and had sex with her.

Koide’s agency, Amuse Inc., said it is suspending the actor from all agency-related activities “for an indefinite period.”

The scandal also prompted NHK to cancel a drama starring Koide that was set to debut on Saturday, while Nippon Television Network Corp. removed him from the cast of a drama set to air next month.

Koide was cast in the role of Sanma Akashiya, one of the most popular comedians in Japan, for a drama that Netflix Inc. plans to distribute in 190 countries from July 7. Netflix said it is considering how to respond to the scandal.

Koide has acted in many films, including “Surely Someday,” “Boku no Kanojo wa Cyborg” (“Cyborg She”)” and “Nodame Cantabile.”

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