Top court upholds sentence on LDP man for vote-buying

The Supreme Court dismissed on May 2 an appeal by a former Liberal Democratic Party candidate who had been sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison and fined 2 million yen for vote-buying in 1993.

The court’s decision finalized the sentence for 55-year-old Takamitsu Niwa, of Aichi Prefecture. Niwa, son of late Labor Minister Hyosuke Niwa, ran for the now-defunct Aichi No. 2 electoral district on an LDP ticket for the 1993 House of Representatives election, in which he was defeated.

According to the Nagoya District Court and the Nagoya High Court, Niwa gave a total of 26.5 million yen to 15 people at campaign offices in Kasugai, Aichi Prefecture, in June 1993, and asked them to buy votes in direct violation of the Public Offices Election Law. Niwa had also been charged with election violations in 1990 while helping his father, who was standing in a Lower House election. Niwa was later given a suspended jail term for his activities.