Japanese Pop Star Shaves Head after Sex Scandal

Article excerpt

MANILA, Philippines - The Japanese music industry is reeling from a sex scandal involving a member of top girl group AKB48 and a Japanese-Filipino member of GENERATIONS boy band.

AKB48 member Minegishi Minami, 20, shaved her head after a Japanese weekly magazine published a report and photos of her spending the night and leaving the house of GENERATIONS member Shirahama Alan, 19. The two starred in a 2011 drama.

After the report came out, Minegishi posted an apology on YouTube and pleaded that she wanted to stay as member of the girl group, who has strict rules on dating.

Because of the scandal, Minegishi was demoted to trainee status on Feb. 1 and will remain in AKB48.

In her YouTube apology, Minegishi said she was so sorry for causing the scandal.

"I am very sorry for worrying the members, you fans, staff members, my family, and many people for the article about me on a weekly magazine that will be released today. As the first generation member of AKB48 that was formed back in 2005, I was supposed to be in the position where I always had to act as a role model for the junior members. However, what I have done was such a thoughtless and a lack of self-awareness behavior," she said, according to Tokyohive.

She added, "I do not expect that I would be forgiven by doing this, but what I first thought was that I did not want to quit AKB48. I was unable to think of leaving AKB48 now where the members I love and spent my youth together, and you warm fans are. I know this is being over optimistic, but I want to stay as Minegishi Minami of AKB48 if possible."

The video has since been made private on YouTube.

Meanwhile, Shirahama's agency was quoted as saying that "We leave his private life up to him."

Shirahama, whose father is a Japanese and mother is a Filipina, debuted as member of Japanese group GENERATIONS last year. He is also an actor and dancer.

On Google+, Tomonobu Togasaki, AKB group theater general manager, answered questions from fans regarding Minegishi. …