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Court Hands Suspended Sentence to act-age Manga Writer Tatsuya Matsuki for Indecent Act

posted on by Rafael Antonio Pineda
Matsuki will not serve 18 months in prison, if he remains on good behavior for 3 years

The Tokyo District Court handed a guilty verdict and sentence to act-age manga writer Tatsuya Matsuki on the charge of committing a coerced indecent act on a female middle school student on Wednesday. Matsuki is sentenced to one year and six months in prison, but the sentence is suspended for three years. (If Matsuki remains in good behavior for three years, he will not serve time in prison.)

Matsuki was indicted for the second of two coerced indecent acts that he allegedly committed on June 18. The prosecutor's office did not indict Matsuki for the first incident, which reportedly occurred on June 18 at around 8:00 p.m. (an hour before the second incident.) Matsuki admitted to the charge in November. The prosecution had sought a 18-month prison sentence without suspension, while defense had sought a suspended sentence, arguing that the defendant had received punishment in society such as the cancellation of his manga series.

NHK reported on August 8 that Matsuki was arrested on suspicion of committing an indecent act with a female middle school student. According to police, the girl was walking in the Nakano ward of Tokyo on June 18 at around 8:00 p.m. when the suspect approached the girl from behind while on a bicycle and touched her inappropriately on her chest. Afterward, the suspect fled the scene on the bicycle. The girl went to police, who analyzed security camera footage to investigate. Police discovered through security footage that about an hour later, a similar incident on a nearby Nakano road with a different female middle school student occurred, involving a suspect who resembled Matsuki.

The editors of Shueisha's Weekly Shonen Jump magazine had announced on August 10 that they canceled the serialization of the manga. The chapter that appeared in this year's combined 36th and 37th issue, which shipped on August 11, is the final chapter. Shueisha also ceased sales and distribution of the manga's physical and digital volumes. Usazaki later offered an extensive comment last month regarding the arrest and the fate of the manga.

Shueisha's MANGA Plus service announced on August 8 that it would not publish the final chapter on its platform. Viz Media announced on August 10 that it will not publish the final chapter of the manga on its English Shonen Jump service. Additionally, Viz Media removed its listing of further compiled book volumes of the manga, as well as a notice that it would add chapters 26-45 of the manga after they were translated.

Hori Pro canceled the upcoming stage play adaptation of the manga.

Matsuki and Usazaki launched the act-age manga in Weekly Shonen Jump in January 2018. The manga was nominated for Kodansha's 43rd annual Manga Awards last year.

Sources: Kyōdō Tsūshin, Reuters


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