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Akimoto Seen Facing Fresh Arrest Warrant over Bribery Tues.

Akimoto Seen Facing Fresh Arrest Warrant over Bribery Tues.

   Tokyo, Jan. 13 (Jiji Press)--Japanese prosecutors are expected to serve a fresh arrest warrant on lawmaker Tsukasa Akimoto over bribery on Tuesday, following his arrest late last month for his alleged receipt of 3.7 million yen in bribes from a Chinese company over a casino-featuring integrated resort, informed sources said Monday.
   The special investigation team of the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office suspects that Akimoto, a 48-year-old member of the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of the Diet, Japan's parliament, accepted 2 million yen in cash from the firm, 500.com, under the name of speech fees and had the company shoulder costs for his travel to Shenzhen to visit its head office in the southern China city, according to the sources.
   The Chinese company, which was planning to join an IR project in Hokkaido, northernmost Japan, asked Akimoto in August 2017 to deliver a speech at an IR-related symposium in Naha, the capital of the southernmost Japan prefecture of Okinawa. The firm raised fees for the speech to 2 million yen from the initially planned 500,000 yen right after it learned that he would be assigned days later to the post of Cabinet Office state minister in charge of the Japanese government's initiative to launch IRs, the sources said.
   In December 2017, Akimoto visited Macau, as well as the Shenzhen headquarters of 500.com.
   An income and spending report of a group of supporters of the lawmaker had records of 1.28-million-yen outlays for each of the trips to Shenzhen and Macau. But the prosecutor team strongly suspects that the travel costs were borne by 500.com, the sources said.

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AFP-JIJI PRESS NEWS JOURNAL


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