The victim was stunned… “Sanma’s Brotherhood” caught in a fraud made an astonishing statement in court. | FRIDAY DIGITAL

The victim was stunned… “Sanma’s Brotherhood” caught in a fraud made an astonishing statement in court.

Appearing in court, Takahashi made an emotional appeal, saying, "It's all Corona's fault.

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I don’t remember how much I owe now. I was just thinking on the spur of the moment, so I didn’t think anything of it.

Heiaki Takahashi, 72, a former rakugo storyteller and brother of Akashiya Sanma, 67, said in court at the Okazaki branch of the Nagoya District Court on September 20.

Takahashi was arrested in May of this year on suspicion of defrauding acquaintances of a large sum of money by calling it “preparation money” for a nonexistent event. The trial is currently underway at the Okazaki branch of the Nagoya District Court, where prosecutors allege that Takahashi defrauded two acquaintances, A and B, out of a total of more than 10 million yen since around 2007.

Takahashi used to go by the stage name “Akashiya Koroku” (“Akashiya Oroku”). In 1974, he apprenticed himself to Matsunosuke Shofukutei, who was also Sanma’s teacher, and for a time they formed a comic duo called Akashiya Oroku and Sanma. The duo soon spontaneously dissolved, but he continued to perform on the stage of Yoshimoto Kogyo’s Kyoto Kagetsu under the name “Gosho no Yakoroku” (Gosho’s House Oroku).

At the time of his arrest, Sanma said on the radio, “It is assumed that [defendant Takahashi] has been dead for 20 years,” expressing his puzzlement at the arrest of his brother.

In May 2008, Takahashi wrote an IOU at a coffee shop (courtesy of Mr. A). His stage name at the time of his arrest was “Miyakoya Fukusuke.

One of the victims, Ms. A, said, “I was arrested in May ’20.

About 20 years ago, about 20 years ago, Takahashi was the host of a TV show. We met about 20 years ago when I attended a dinner show that Takahashi hosted, and I called him ‘Master.'” 15 We had lost touch since then, but in the fall of ’19 In the fall of ’19, I suddenly received a phone call from Takahashi and he said, “There will be a dinner show of Takashi Hosokawa in Okinawa, and I need 1.5 million yen out of the 3 million yen needed for the preparation. I asked him if he could lend me 1.5 million yen out of the 3 million needed for preparations for the show. I was reluctant to accept the loan, but Takahashi said, “I’ll be happy to write you a letter of loan. When I was reluctant, he said, ‘I will write an IOU and I can pay you back immediately. I am Sanma’s brother, so my face is well known, and I will neither run nor hide.

The money at that time was returned immediately, but as I repeatedly invested it, it gradually stopped being returned. …… I was told that the money was paid back right away. The truth is that the whole event was a lie. The amount of my damage was about 9,000,000 yen. The amount of my damage was about 9,000,000 yen. This time, I was prosecuted for the fraud against me and Mr. B. I heard that there were more than 20 victims. I heard that there are more than 20 victims. He is a genius at talking, and everyone lends him money even if they are skeptical. He is a top-notch scammer, and the total amount of damage must be quite large.

In fact, this is not the first time Takahashi has been arrested. In 1993, he was also arrested for fraud, having defrauded several acquaintances of money.

In fact, he once used his connections from his Yoshimoto days to plan and manage an event in which popular celebrities and actors appeared to sell kimonos and precious metals, but it is believed that he gradually began to cheat people out of their money through fictitious events that had no real substance.

Takahashi in the fall of ’19 (courtesy of Ms. A). The way he listened to the other party’s story with his eyes narrowed looked just like Mr. Sanma,” said Mr. A.

The 72-year-old Takahashi stood in court wearing a white cutter shirt, black slacks, gray hair, and glasses.

I feel sorry for the victims and I am sorry for what I have done. I am sorry that I did the same thing over again. It’s sad and painful.”

When the judge pointed out that Takahashi had made similar comments in the past, he stopped talking and began to speak in a sympathetic tone.

When various people said to me, ‘I want you to call that person, I want you to call this person,’ I got myself so colorful. …… I tried very hard to run the event to give the man a chance.’ 20 Corona went viral in 2006, and I became a bit of a jerk about running events. I could talk about it (about non-existent events) as if I knew what I was talking about, because I had really done events before. From there, I fell into cycling. …… It’s all Corona’s fault.”

When asked about his future, he looked over at his wife, who was in court, and continued.

I’m thinking of retiring from show business. I won’t do any more event work. I want to pay back the victims little by little with the 30,000 yen from my pension and my wife’s salary.

Defendant Takahashi in the fall of ’20 (courtesy of Mr. A). He admitted to the fraud after this.

Takahashi looks exhausted. However, Ms. A, the victim, was disappointed, saying, “Nothing has changed.

He has lost a lot of weight since we last saw him, but he has not changed at all in the way he speaks in a way that grabs people’s hearts. It is also a lie that Takahashi started the scam because of Korona. Even before Korona, he had been telling me that he had a great opportunity to make a profit. He also spoke to the judge in a sympathetic manner. …… I was still trying to trick people even though I was arrested. I am disappointed that he still tries to deceive people even after his arrest. Also, he once told me, ‘I have two disciples,’ and he asked me to lend him money for his funeral because one of them had passed away. However, during this trial, I found out that the other victim, Mr. B, had 15 disciples. It turned out that he had told me that he had 15 disciples. As he himself said, he must have really been talking off the top of his head.”

About two months after Takahashi’s arrest in May of this year, Ms. A received a letter from his lawyer.

“Through his lawyer, he offered to ‘refund 100,000 yen for the time being. I received a letter from Takahashi’s lawyer saying, ‘Let me refund 100,000 yen for the time being. I have lent him more than 9 million yen, but the amount is too small. I have lent him more than 9,000,000 yen, but that is too little, isn’t it? I was angry at the thought that he was trying to extenuate the situation by refunding me as little as possible, so I refused.”

A letter sent to Ms. A by Mr. Takahashi’s attorney in July

Takahashi says that he used the money he obtained from the fraud to repay his debts. The verdict is expected to be handed down in mid-October.

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