Chongryon-linked official arrested

Kyodo News

A former senior official of an affiliate of the pro-Pyongyang General Association of Korean Residents in Japan, or Chongryon, was arrested Thursday on suspicion of operating a tax accountancy business without a license, police said.

So Yong Nam, a 54-year-old former deputy chief of a chamber of commerce and industry under Chongryon in Shinjuku, Tokyo, crafted in March 2006 a tax declaration for 2005 on behalf of a member of the chamber despite not being qualified to do so, according to the Metropolitan Police Department’s Public Security Bureau.

So has denied the allegation, telling investigators, “I only helped create a tax declaration document and it wasn’t a violation of the tax accountancy law,” according to police.

Police suspect So also produced tax declaration reports for other chamber members.

Earlier in the day, Tokyo police searched the federation of Chongryon chambers of commerce and industry, located in Ueno, Tokyo, in connection with the case.

The police also raided the Shinjuku chamber on Oct. 29.

The chamber member who allegedly asked So to produce the tax declaration has been fined for income tax irregularities, according to Tokyo police. The member runs a restaurant, they said.