Japanese Princess Mako to give up $1.35M to marry Kei Komuro

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Japanese Princess Mako to give up $1.35M to marry Kei Komuro

A Japanese princess who is the niece of Emperor Naruhito is giving up her royal title and turning down a $1.35 million payment to marry her commoner college sweetheart — who graduated in May from New York’s Fordham Law School.

Princess Mako, 29, and Kei Komuro, her former college classmate, announced their engagement in 2017 when her grandfather, Akihito, was emperor of Japan.

But the pair put off the nuptials amid reports of a financial dispute between Komuro’s mother and her former fiancé.

The couple met in 2012 at a restaurant while studying at the International Christian University in Tokyo.

The Japanese government is set to agree that Mako forego the payment for royals who relinquish their status to marry commoners, Reuters reported, citing public broadcaster NHK, which said the wedding date may be announced in October.

Princess Mako is set to forego the Royal payment of $1.35M so she can marry her college sweetheart Kei Komuro.
Princess Mako is set to forego the Royal payment of $1.35M so she can marry her college sweetheart Kei Komuro.
APAN POOL VIA JIJI PRESS/JIJI PRESS/AFP via Getty Images

On Monday, Komuro returned to Japan for the first time in about three years from the US, where he lives and works for a law firm, to prepare to finally tie the knot, according to Kyodo News.

The 29-year-old is expected to hold a news conference along with his wife-to-be after spending about two weeks under quarantine, according to the country’s COVID-19 protocol, the outlet said.

The couple plans to live in the US after getting hitched, Kyodo News reported, citing sources familiar with the matter.

Kei Komuro graduated from Fordham Law school in 2018. According to sources close with the couple, the former princess plans to move to the United States after the wedding.
Kei Komuro graduated from Fordham Law school in 2018. According to sources close with the couple, the former princess plans to move to the United States after the wedding.
KAZUHIRO NOGI/AFP via Getty Images

Komuro, who left Japan for the Big Apple in 2018, graduated from Fordham Law School in May, the outlet said.

The couple delayed their wedding for about three years amid a string of media reports about a dispute between Komuro’s mother and a former fiancé over $36,000 in financial support, including money spent on his education, according to Kyodo News.

In April, Komuro released a statement seeking to correct what he called the public’s misunderstandings about his mother’s financial status.

The couple postponed their wedding for three years after rumors of a financial dispute between   Komuro's mother and a former fiancé and $36,000 in financial support.
The couple postponed their wedding for three years after rumors of a financial dispute between Kei Komuro’s mother and a former fiancé over $36,000.
AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko

He reportedly offered to make a payment to his mom’s former fiancé in an effort to settle the financial dispute.

“If they love each other and want to get married, then I wish to congratulate them,” a 43-year-old woman from Chiba Prefecture who happened to be at Narita airport when Komuro arrived told Kyodo News.

But another woman, a 69-year-old from Sapporo, said the future groom “should ensure accountability before getting married,” referring to the financial troubles of his family.

Mako won’t be the first princess to step down.

In 2005, her aunt, Princess Sayako, abdicated after she became the first-ever Japanese royal to marry a commoner.

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