Three former SMAP singers to leave talent agency in September
Japan Times -- Jun 19
Goro Inagaki, Tsuyoshi Kusanagi and Shingo Katori, three former members of the ultrapopular boy band SMAP, will leave their management company, Johnny & Associates, in September, the agency said.

Contracts with Inagaki, 43, Kusanagi, 42, and Katori, 40, will expire Sept. 8, Johnny & Associates said. It will be the day before the 26th anniversary of the debut of their first song on a CD, "Can't Stop!! --- Loving ---" which was released on Sept. 9, 1991.

The trio told the agency's management that they did not want to renew their contracts. No information about SMAP's former leader, Masahiro Nakai, and the fifth member, Takuya Kimura, was given, but media reports said they will remain with the agency.

"The three will embark on their own paths that they themselves decided on, but anywhere they go, and under all circumstances, I'll wish them the best of luck," Johnny Kitagawa, founder and president of the management agency, said in a statement Sunday.

Originally formed in 1988 with six members, Katsuyuki Mori left the band in 1996 to become a motorcycle racer.

SMAP is considered one of the most influential groups in Japanese pop music. It's members gained popularity not only through singing and dancing but also as actors, comedians and even chefs, as they appeared in various films and TV programs such as their own "SMAPxSMAP," which ran from 1996 to 2016.

News source: Japan Times
Oct 21
Miyazaki Prefectural Police have arrested a 62-year-old man in the murder of the manager of a diner in Miyazaki City last month, reports Jiji Press (tokyoreporter.com)
Oct 21
Dressed entirely in black and quick on his feet, he eluded Osaka's finest for nearly a decade. And then, to their surprise, they discovered upon his arrest that he is an elderly man. (tokyoreporter.com)
Oct 21
Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested six street touts over the alleged aggressive solicitation of pedestrians in the Ueno area of Taito Ward, reports the Sankei Shimbun. (tokyoreporter.com)
Oct 19
Miyazaki Prefectural Police plan to arrest a 62-year-old man in the murder of the manager of a diner in Miyazaki City last month, reports Nippon News Network (tokyoreporter.com)
Oct 19
Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested an organized crime member suspected in the trafficking in stimulant drugs who used a special delivery service to send the contraband to customers, reports TBS News (tokyoreporter.com)
Oct 19
Ibaraki Prefectural Police on Wednesday revealed that a 49-year-old woman whose body was discovered inside a love hotel in Mito City had been beaten, reports TV Asahi (tokyoreporter.com)
Oct 19
Customer service in Japan really is incredible. For example, on October 16, at around 4 in the morning, a man walked into the Shimojima Minami branch of convenience store Circle K in Shizuoka City's Aoi Ward. (rocketnews24.com)
Oct 19
Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested the director of a chiropractic clinic for allegedly installing a camera inside a women's bathroom, reports TV Asahi. (tokyoreporter.com)
Oct 19
Four people were found alive Wednesday on snowy Mount Asahidake in Hokkaido after they went missing Tuesday, police and rescue workers said. (Japan Times)
Oct 19
Police in Shizuoka city on Wednesday began a murder investigation after the body of a 62-year-old woman was found in a mountain forest. (Japan Today)