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Archive for Thursday, November 29, 2007

Former vice defense chief arrested in scandal

November 29, 2007

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— A former top Japanese defense bureaucrat and his wife were arrested Wednesday on suspicion they accepted lavish gifts from companies - including one linked to General Electric - in exchange for contracts, officials said.

The bribery scandal also implicates the current finance minister, who twice served as defense minister.

Today, prosecutors searched the Defense Ministry for evidence in the widening scandal. National broadcaster NHK showed investigators streaming into the ministry offices.

Former Vice Defense Minister Takemasa Moriya, 63, was arrested on suspicion he accepted a dozen free golf trips worth about $35,850 from 2003 to 2006, knowing that favors were expected in return, the Tokyo District Prosecutor's Office said.

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