Arrest for fraud reveals fraudulent existence of Tokyo socialite

Kanae Matsunaga boasted of lavish lifestyle on Twitter and played with muliple men before joining Dmm.com

Flash Nov. 24
Flash Nov. 24

In recent years, spokespersons for shopping site DMM.com, which peddles everything from adult video DVDs to e-books, have included the likes of former baseball star Kazuhiro Kiyohara, director Takeshi Kitano and celebrity Rola.

In recent months, however, none of them has garnered the intrigue of female personality Kanae Matsunaga, who was arrested last month for peddling fake jewelry. According to Flash (Nov. 24), it was the beginning of the end for the self-made socialite.

On October 28, Kyoto police arrested the shapely Matsunaga, 26, for selling a counterfeit Cartier necklace for 650,000 yen in an online auction to a woman in Kyoto’s Fushimi Ward.

On her Twitter account (@matsuko1223), Matsunaga took up the name “Babylon Matsuko,” in which she boasted of an extremely lavish lifestyle. In photos attached to her tweets, she shows a taste for expensive purses, wine and very revealing outfits that highlight her chest area.

“On her account, you can see her coming and going at restaurants that are Michelin-star caliber and fancy stores,” says IT journalist Toshiyuki Inoue. “She’s got over 10,000 followers. With such a vacuous lifestyle, suspicions that she was a fraud also emerged.” (Since her arrest, her Twitter follower figure has exceeded 30,000.)

After graduating from the legal department of Okayama University, Matsunaga came to Tokyo, where, according to one of her associates, she played around with a lot of men — for easy cash.

“She started enrolling in ‘dating clubs‘ about three years ago,” says the acquaintance, who is employed at a restaurant. “While out for dinner she’d tell a guy that she prefers to speak frankly about sex since it reduces tension. She never seemed to have a steady boyfriend.”

Dubbed a “koibito bank,” such a club registers wealthy male businessmen who are seeking to sleep with young, attractive women. Men pay enrollment and membership fees while women are not charged.

A couple matched by the service may go on a “date” two to three times each month in which the woman is compensated between 30,000 yen and 50,000 yen for each session. According to Flash, Matsunaga registered with a number of these businesses as a “job.”

“With several partners, she was able to bring in a steady income,” says the aforementioned acquaintance.

In April, word broke on a television program that Matsunaga was joining DMM.com as member of a public relations division. Through an encounter with one man she handed her job at DMM.com, in which she was compensated 500,000 yen each month.

“She had a contract (with a company) as a ‘sales promotion planner’ but it got cancelled when she didn’t meet her quota,” says a different acquaintance. “After she landed the job at DMM.com, she moved out of her one-room place in Shirogane (in Minato Ward) and into a big apartment building nearby.”

Kanae Matsunaga at Dmm.com
Kanae Matsunaga at Dmm.com

Matsunaga, who was charged with fraud, admitted to the allegations. A report appearing in Josei Seven (Dec. 3) quotes an investigator who says that the she admits to collecting about four million yen from the sale of counterfeit goods. However, it is believed the total amount actually exceeds 10 million yen.

When a reporter for Flash attempted to contact DMM.com for comment on Matsunaga, a representative of the site said that the company was unable to confirm whether the suspect in the fraud case was the same person who worked at the company. Subsequent phone calls to the company went unanswered.

Matsunaga’s Twitter account has not been updated since the day of her arrest. (K.N.)

Source: “DMM bijin koho taiho sagi ‘koibito banku’ ni ita!” Flash (Nov. 24, pages 20-21)

Note: Brief extracts from Japanese vernacular media in the public domain that appear here were translated and summarized under the principle of “fair use.” Every effort has been made to ensure accuracy of the translations. However, we are not responsible for the veracity of their contents. The activities of individuals described herein should not be construed as “typical” behavior of Japanese people nor reflect the intention to portray the country in a negative manner. Our sole aim is to provide examples of various types of reading matter enjoyed by Japanese.

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