Police arrested 50-year-old Tomohiro Maki on the charge of quasi-forcible indecency on a minor. Maki is the current representative director of Gainax, the anime studio behind Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann and FLCL, as well as the original studio behind Neon Genesis Evangelion.
According to police, Maki did indecent acts to an aspiring seiyuu, who is in her late teens. The Gainax executive allegedly took nude photos of her while in the company’s females-only dormitory. He also allegedly touched her inappropriately while claiming to massage her because her feet were swollen.
He did the acts four times allegedly, between 6th and 23rd February. The victim then filed the charges on the same month. As for Maki, he has denied all these charges, and said that he only took the photos because he was asked to. According to the victim’s statement, Maki took the nude photos of her to “prepare her for future photo shoots” in the entertainment industry.
When several news agencies credited Gainax for Evangelion following Maki’s arrest, Studio Khara, which now holds the rights to the franchise, distanced itself from Maki and Gainax. In an official statement, Khara stated that they, founder and Evangelion creator (and also Gainax co-founder) Hideaki Anno, as well as Evangelion anime director Kazuya Tsurumaki don’t have any relationship with Maki. Khara also pointed out that Anno and Tsurumaki aren’t even acquainted with him.
Khara also emphasised that they have the sole rights to Evangelion, therefore Maki has no involvement with it. They also stated that they’re not doing any business with Gainax, and even mentioned their ongoing legal dispute with them. The Studio also said that the mentions of Evangelion in the news reports were “regrettable”.