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Canadian woman turned to fake marriage to pursue cosplay dreams

TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police on Tuesday arrested a female Canadian cosplay (costume play) enthusiast for allegedly engaging in a fake marriage with a Japanese national two years ago in order to obtain residency, reports Jiji Press (July 31).

On June 17, 2016, Shannon Danielle Wong, a 29-year-old resident of Shinjuku Ward, and Narimichi Sasaki, 37, an employee in the construction industry, allegedly filed paperwork for marriage at a ward office in Yokohama without actually intending to live a wedded life.

Wong, who has been accused of forging a notarized document, admits to the allegations, according to the Oi Police Station. “Lolita fashion is not popular in Canada,” said Wong in referring to the trend that features frilly dress, bonnets and knee socks. “I can pursue cosplay in Japan with peace of mind.” Sasaki also admits to the allegations.

Shannon Wong
Canadian cosplayer Shannon Wong (Twitter)

Wong obtained a student visa in 2012. During her four-year stay, she met Sasaki at a cosplay event in the Kabukicho red-light district of Tokyo’s Shinjuku Ward.

Offered 1 million yen

According to police, Wong subsequently offered 1 million yen to Sasaki to engage in a fake marriage so that she could obtain residency. An initial payment of 700,000 yen was to be followed by monthly installments of 30,000 yen each.

In February, an investigation was launched after the Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau received an anonymous tip. The results of the investigation revealed that Wong, who is currently employed in the fuzoku (commercial sex) trade, is not living a life of matrimony with Sasaki.

On July 11, police first arrested the pair on immigration violations regarding the submission of an untrue application.