Tomobe’s son linked to 100 million yen yakuza bribe

A 29-year-old son of Upper House member Tatsuo Tomobe, who has been under fire in connection with a mutual fund scandal, gave about 100 million yen to the head of a Yamaguchi-gumi underworld affiliate to settle troubles related to the lawmaker’s election campaign, sources close to the fund said Jan. 20.Sources said Tomobe knew of the links between his son and the gang, but was not aware of the specific amount the son allegedly paid out. Investigators from the Metropolitan Police Department suspect part of the money raised for the Orange Kyosai Kumiai mutual fund may have been funneled to the crime organization, informed sources said.Investigators say about 1 billion yen was used in Tomobe’s election campaign. The reported trouble with the gang allegedly stemmed from 550 million yen that Tomobe’s side spent for campaign activities through a political broker who acted as Tomobe’s campaign manager, the sources said.They said Tomobe’s son, whose name is being withheld, and Orange Kyosai executives gave the sum in cash and promissory notes to the broker on several occasions before and after the July 1995 Upper House election. Because the broker is believed to have pocketed the money instead of funneling it to politicians who supported Tomobe, the lawmaker decided to cut ties with the broker, the sources said.The broker, however, started harassing Tomobe’s side, and Tomobe asked the head of the Yamaguchi-gumi affiliate to settle the trouble with the political broker, they added. The broker reportedly told sources close to Tomobe’s side that he was given only 10 million yen, although 50 million yen was promised for his help in Tomobe’s campaign.