China Firm May Have Brought Cash into Japan Illegally

Society Politics

Tokyo, Dec. 17 (Jiji Press)--A Chinese firm that had planned to open an integrated resort featuring a casino in Japan is suspected of bringing a large amount of cash illegally into the country, informed sources said Tuesday.

The special squad of the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office searched the homes of two former secretaries of Tsukasa Akimoto, a lawmaker of Japan's House of Representatives, the lower chamber of parliament, on suspected violation of the foreign exchange act. Akimoto, 48, a member of Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party, was a state minister in charge of integrated resorts at the Cabinet Office.

The special squad is believed to be investigating any possible links between the money suspected to have been illegally brought into Japan by the Chinese casino-related firm and its previously planned integrated resort business in Japan, the sources said, adding that people related to the company allegedly brought in the money in question without notifying Japanese customs authorities.

The company is believed to have planned to open an integrated resort in the village of Rusutsu in the northernmost Japan prefecture of Hokkaido, according to the sources. Senior officials of the firm had visited Hokkaido for the potential business launch, the sources said.

In addition to Rusutsu, some other municipalities in Hokkaido, including the city of Tomakomai, had hoped to host an integrated resort, but the Hokkaido government announced last month that it will not seek to become a venue for such a facility.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press