Prominent Kabuki actor Ichikawa Ennosuke admitted Friday to helping his parents to end their lives with sleeping drugs in May, in a suspected family suicide pact prior to the publication of a magazine report accusing him of sexual abuse and harassment.

Ichikawa Ennosuke. (Kyodo) 

"I have hurt many people, including fans who have supported a person like myself. I am filled with gratitude for those supporting me. I will forever feel sorry," Ennosuke, 47, told the first hearing at the Tokyo District Court.

In the hearing, prosecutors demanded Ennosuke gets three years in prison. They said he and his parents decided to die together after Ennosuke, who found out about the forthcoming magazine report, told them of his plan to die, thinking he could no longer go work in Kabuki.

In his closing statements, he did not mention anything about whether he wanted to return to Kabuki.

According to Ennosuke's statements, read out by the prosecutors, he wanted to stay involved in Kabuki and perform.

"If there is anything that only I can do I would like to do it and make it my hope to live," he said.

The trial closed the same day with the defense team demanding a suspended term. The ruling will be handed down on Nov. 17.

According to the indictment, Ennosuke, whose real name is Takahiko Kinoshi, gave his father Hiroyuki, 76, known as Kabuki actor Ichikawa Danshiro, and mother Nobuko, 75, sleeping drugs at their family home in Tokyo on May 17, leading to their deaths between the afternoon and the next morning.

The weekly magazine published the report on May 18, alleging Ennosuke bullied and sexually abused actors and staff in his theater collective.

Ennosuke's manager found the parents and the actor collapsed at their home on the morning of May 18, police said.

The parents were pronounced dead and Ennosuke, who was disoriented, was hospitalized until his arrest on June 27.

Ennosuke was found with what appeared to be suicide notes bearing his name at the bottom, investigative sources said.

Ennosuke began his career in the early 1980s and is considered a major figure in the world of Kabuki, appearing in a series of "Super Kabuki" plays that combine traditional performance with modern theatrical effects and music. The plays achieved major commercial success.

He has also appeared in several popular television series.

A total of 1,033 people lined up for the 22 courtroom seats made available to the general public.

Emergency service in Japan: 119

If you are having suicidal thoughts, help is available.

For Japan, call Yorisoi Hotline at 0120279338 (toll-free). Press 2 after the recorded message for consultation in English, Chinese, Korean, Tagalog, Portuguese, Spanish, Thai, Vietnamese, Nepali, or Indonesian. The service in these languages is also available on Facebook messenger.

For those outside Japan, you can find a list of other resources here

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