The “Gorgeous Kano Sisters” drama has escalated. Though her elder sister Kyoko (44, photo center) earlier this month reported to police that she stole jewelery worth ¥400 million, a lawyer for Oyama Harue (photo left) stated yesterday that she took only what belonged to her when she moved out of her Tokyo home in January. She has also insisted that the items she took are worth far less than her elder sister claimed. On hearing that her sister had decided to file a criminal complaint and sue her for the return of the items, she replied that she would answer the case in court. It was widely speculated that the whole affair was simply a stunt by the never publicity-shy sisters to promote a new book by Kyoko, but it now looks like the matter will go to the courts. Such a court case would probably reveal to the public for the first time much of the financial dealings of the Kano Sisters, the funding of whose extravagant lifestyle has always been something of a mystery. Another mystery is the man in Harue’s life, described as a Belgian whose family is connected with the jewelery business, and whom she met in France two years ago. He is said to have been living off her in her Tokyo home, but she was hoping to marry him.
• Actor Takamatsu Hideo died of a heart attack at his home on Monday morning. He was 77. A popular character actor in many TV dramas such as “Judo Icchokusen”, which ran on TBS from 1969 to 1971, he was working right up until his death. He started working last Thursday on location in Ibaraki Prefecture for a new TV Tokyo drama. Complaining that he was feeling unwell, he returned to his Kanagawa prefecture home by express bus on Sunday night. His wife, former fashion model Yoko (71), awoke on Monday morning to find his body cold and lifeless. A TV Tokyo spokesman said the network has yet to decide whether to re-shoot or even continue making the drama.