Mamoru Samuragochi, the composer known as the "Japanese Beethoven", has been exposed as a fraud.
Samuragochi was credited with writing the scores for titles such as Resident Evil and Onimusha, as well writing Hiroshima Symphony No 1, which was dedicated to the victims of the 1945 atomic explosion.
It has now been revealed that Samuragochi, who allegedly lost his hearing 15 years ago but continued to work with he called "absolute pitch", was actually commissioning a Tokyo-based music teacher called Takashi Niigaki to write his music for him.
At a media event (reported on by ABC) Niigaki confirmed that he'd scored over 20 pieces of music for Samuragochi across nearly two decades, earning $77,000 in the process.
"I told him a few times that we should stop doing this, but he never gave in," Niigaki said to reporters. "Also he said he would commit suicide if I stop composing for him."
Emotional blackmail wasn't enough for Niigaki to remain silent once he discovered that music he had written was to be used by athlete Daisuke Takahashi in the Winter Olympics, and credited to Samuragochi.
"I was afraid that even Takahashi, who will perform in the Olympics for Japan, would be used to enforce the lies made by Samuragochi and me," he explained.
Niigaki has also suggested that Samuragochi isn't even deaf: "I've never felt he was deaf ever since we met. We carry on normal conversations. I don't think he is (handicapped). At first he acted to me also as if he had suffered hearing loss, but he stopped doing so eventually. He told me, after the music for the video games was unveiled, that he would continue to play the role (of a deaf person)."
Although the fraudulent composer hasn't made a statement himself, his lawyer did say that he was "deeply sorry as he has betrayed fans and disappointed others. He knows he could not possibly make any excuse for what he has done. He is mentally distressed and not in a condition to properly express his own thoughts."
Loading next content