TOKYO -- A monetary dispute between the mother of Kei Komuro, who is preparing to marry Princess Mako, the niece of Emperor Naruhito, and the former fiance of Komuro's mother remains unsettled.
According to sources including Komuro, his mother began dating her ex-fiance around 2010 with marriage in mind, and received financial support of more than 4 million yen (roughly $35,000) for living expenses and as a gift to celebrate Komuro's university entrance.
After they broke up in September 2012, the former fiance had initially said he did not intend to seek the return of the money. But in August 2013, he sent a letter asking for repayment, though Komuro's mother did not respond. Both parties did not make a move after that, and in September 2017, Princess Mako and Komuro held a press conference on their unofficial engagement.
In December 2017 a weekly magazine reported on the monetary trouble between Komuro's mother and her ex-fiance. Coverage on related issues continued before the Imperial Household Agency subsequently announced the postponement of Princess Mako's engagement.
Regarding the monetary dispute, Komuro released a letter in January 2019 stating that he "understood that the matter had been resolved" and that he "will make efforts to earn the former fiance's understanding."
Though discussions have continued through their lawyers since then, both sides have not been able reach an agreement as they failed to bridge the gap between them.
Komuro again released a letter on the monetary trouble in April 2021, and for the first time explained the process that led up to the dispute in detail. He said, "The discussions (with the ex-fiance) have failed." Four days later through his lawyer, Komuro indicated he would hand over the money as a settlement instead of treating it as a debt and repaying it.
The former fiance has shown his willingness to hold negotiations on the settlement money, but a clear path to a solution is yet to be seen.
(Japanese original by Takeshi Wada, Tokyo City News Department)