Money Possible Cause for Ex-Japan Farm Minister Shooting


Morioka, Iwate Pref., Dec. 11 (Jiji Press)--Former Japanese farm minister Tokuichiro Tamazawa was shot probably because of money trouble, an acquaintance of the arrested shooting suspect suggested Wednesday.

According to the person who knows the suspect, Hisashi Takahashi, 82, Takahashi told several years ago that he lent money to Tamazawa in connection with election campaigns.

"Tamazawa considers the money political funds, but I regard it as loans. I'm angry at the classmate and must get the money back soon," Takahashi was also quoted as saying by the acquaintance in his 70s.

Takahashi quit his real estate business at the time and appeared to be strapped for cash, the acquaintance added.

According to the Iwate prefectural police, Tamazawa was shot in the leg at his home in Morioka on Tuesday. Later on the day, Takahashi handed himself in at a police station with a gun, saying he had injured Tamazawa. He was immediately arrested on charges of violating the swords and firearms control law. Tamazawa's wound is expected to take two weeks to heal.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press