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Tokyo: Street scouts accused of illegally luring woman into adult video industry

Makoto Takagi and Asa Zen
Makoto Takagi (left) and Asa Zen (Twitter)

TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested four persons, including three street scouts, over the alleged illegal luring a female college student into the adult video (AV) industry two years ago, reports the Asahi Shimbun (Mar. 1).

On around February 29, 2016, Makoto Takagi, a 31-year-old resident of Ota Ward, and two boys, now aged 19 and 21, allegedly misled a 19-year-old female student at a vocational school in introducing her to an AV production company for a shoot in which she performed acts considered obscene.

Takagi, who has been accused of violating the Employment Security Act regarding harmful business referrals, denies the allegations. “It was only advice about entering the entertainment industry as a model,” the suspect was quoted by the Harajuku Police Station. The other two suspects admit to the allegations, police said.

Police also arrested Asa Zen, a 35-year-old former employee at talent agency Lotus Group.

In July of 2015, the woman appeared at an audition to be a model and met one of the boys. “If you want to be a model, I know a great talent agency,” the scout reportedly said. She then became acquainted with Takagi.

“There is no way to become a model without appearing in AV”

In January of the following year, she engaged in a contract with Lotus Group through Takagi. Over the course of the recruitment process, the woman was falsely told that the agency is staffed with fashion models. However, Takagi eventually said, “There is no way to become a model without appearing in AV.”

When the woman declined to perform as an AV actress, she was told, “If you refuse, you will be asked to pay a huge amount of money, such fees for filming.” When the shoot was finished, the film went on sale.

Takagi and the scouts are believed to have received between 1 million and 5.3 million yen for referring multiple women to Lotus Group.

The matter came to light after the woman consulted with non-profit organization Lighthouse in the summer of 2016.