Tsukasa Akimoto, a Japanese lawmaker, was sentenced to four years in prison and ordered to pay 7.6m yen ($69,000) in fine cash and evidence tampering in a casino-development project.
A former member of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, Akimoto was 7.6m yen between September 2017 and February 2018. The bribe was found guilty of taking bribes, and the legislator was also convicted of offering money to two former Chinese firm 500.com in exchange for falsely approving testimony from the court.
It’s rare for a legislator to hand a prison sentence without a suspension, but Akimoto’s actions are described as “unprecedented blockages of justice”.
Akimoto denied taking the money and stated that he wanted to stop the former Chinese advisers from saying the truth in court.
Akimoto’s claim of innocence was dismissed by judge Toshihiko Niwa, who nominated “The statements of those who were admitted to the acquisition of money were fully credible as evidenced by the objective evidence”
Akimoto’s former secretary of state Akihiro Toyoshima (who was also not guilty) was sentenced to life in prison on homely charges.
Four more people were convicted in Akimoto’s bribery case, and four others were convicted of giving money, because they were convicted of assisting him in tampering with the witness’ testimony.
During his time as Senior Vice Minister in the Cabinet Office (approximately a year from September 2017), the office of Akimoto was overseeing the development of the Government’s working of casinas for entire visits, hotels and conferences with the Faculty.