Aide to Anri Kawai Found Guilty over Campaign Scandal

Society Politics

Hiroshima, June 16 (Jiji Press)--A Japanese court on Tuesday sentenced a secretary to House of Councillors lawmaker Anri Kawai to 18 months in prison, suspended for five years, over an election law violation during her campaign last year.

Hiroshima District Court found Hiroshi Tatemichi, a 54-year-old state-paid secretary to Kawai, guilty of paying campaign workers more than the legal limit during her campaign for the Upper House poll last July. The prosecution had sought a prison term of 18 months.

In the trials, Tatemichi claimed that he was not involved in deciding how much would be paid to campaign workers and was guilty only of assisting the wrongdoing.

Tatemichi was seeking to receive a fine instead of a prison sentence, an attempt that could prevent Kawai's win from being nullified under the guilt-by-association system.

According to the indictment, Tatemichi paid a total of 2.04 million yen to 14 campaign workers for Kawai between around July 19 and 23 last year. The payments exceeded the daily limit of 15,000 yen per person, violating the public offices election law.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press