Man looking for love apparently thinks age aint nothing but a number, police disagree.

For the most part, fake IDs aren’t really a thing in Japan. There just isn’t that much demand for them in a country where bars and clubs don’t card customers, and about the strictest things get is convenience stores’ honor system of having you tap a touchscreen to “confirm” that you’re old enough to buy beer.

But while the lax barriers to forbidden fruits that may tempt minors to pretend to be older mean teens usually don’t any use for fake IDs, police in Aichi Prefecture have filed charges against a resident of the city of Toyota for having a falsified date of birth on his ID, one that claimed he was younger than he really is.

The 47-year-old office worker was born in 1974, but was found to be in possession a fake ID saying he was born in 1988. He also had a third, slightly less fraudulent ID listing his year of birth as 1986, still more than a decade after when he was actually born.

So why was he so determined to drop his age from his 40s to his 30s? In order to meet younger women.

In recent years, many Japanese communities have begun holding matchmaking parties called “machikon” events, often there are certain conditions participants have to meet. Being a local resident is the most common, but many machikon also specify an age range for who can take part. The owner of the fake IDs was unhappy being locked out of machikon events for people in their 30s, and during questioning told the police that “I wanted to trick people into thinking I was younger, so that I could participate in machikon events with young women.” In 2021, he says he attended more than 50 matchmaking parties, almost all of which were supposed to be for 30-somethings.

While dishonesty can never be the foundation of a strong romantic relationship, what got the man in trouble with the law is how he was faking his birthdate. His two fake IDs were actually officially issued driver’s licenses, which he’d obtained as replacements after claiming to have lost his. After receiving the “replacements,” he used his PC to print out a false date of birth and address (perhaps to meet machikon residency requirements) to cover up his real birthday and address with, so he’s now facing charges of creation and use of forged official documents, a more serious crime than just verbally lying about his age to matchmaking organizers would have been, with the official announcement of charges being filed made on Wednesday.

Online reactions have ranged from bewildered exasperation to sympathy to a newfound interest in meeting eligible ladies in their 30s.

“Was he that desperate to meet young women?”
“Huh…by ‘young women’ I thought he was going to be looking for women younger than 30.”
“Sounds like those for-30-something matchmaking parties are pretty great. Maybe I should go to one.”
“If he’s got the guts and gumption to make fake IDs, it seems like he should be able to meet women by more normal methods instead.”
“Some of those machikon are really strict with their upper age limits, so I can see where he’s coming from.”

As for how the man got caught, he was stopped for a random ID check in a parking lot in Toyota last October, where the officer noticed he had multiple IDs. Oddly enough, the police have also stated that they haven’t been able to determine whether the man is married or not, meaning there’s potentially one more reason why he shouldn’t have been at those matchmaking parties.

Sources: Asahi Shimbun Digital, via Livedoor News, Yahoo! Japan News/Mee Tele, Twitter
Top image: Pakutaso
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