Police in Sapporo have arrested Yamanaka Izumi, a 25-year-old woman from Kagawa Prefecture, on suspicion of illegally scalping Arashi concert tickets.
According to police, Yamanaka has been accused of reselling five Arashi concert tickets to three women from Sapporo last November to December.
Police said investigations have shown that the woman purchased tickets on a website and resold more than 300 tickets over the past year and a half. She is reported to have profited approximately 10 million yen (~100,000 USD) in total since.
Concert ticket scalping is a huge problem in Japan. Scalpers buy multiple tickets at the original price, leaving less for the public to buy at face value. They then sell these tickets online at an increased price, with some fetching as much as 10 times their face value online. The public is cheated by paying these high prices, but some do pay them.
Between fewer tickets being available at the original price and the high price of scalped tickets, much of the public can’t go to concerts as frequently.
Last month, the group Tenbai No (“No Resale”) was formed—the was the first time such a large-scale industry-wide effort has been made regarding ticket scalping. The group took out full-page ads in two of Japan’s biggest newspapers, Asahi and Yomiuri.
Many acts have already had anti-scalping measures in place for a while now, but it seems like the issue of scalping has been getting out of hand and more needed to be done about it. Facial scanning systems were used by Arashi earlier this year to prevent single buyers from purchasing multiple tickets, while Momoiro Clover Z, B’z, and Mr. Children have used such technology since 2014.
(via NHK—Thanks Gebu for the tip)