Prosecutors to quiz Hatoyama’s mom on funds

Kyodo News

Prosecutors are considering questioning Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama’s 87-year-old mother over the political donations scandal her son is embroiled in, sources said Friday.

It has been reported that Hatoyama received a total of ¥900 million in “loans” from his mother over five years to 2008 and some of the money may have been recorded under fictitious donors in his political funds reports.

A special squad of the Tokyo District Public Prosecutor’s Office is believed to have decided to ask her how she started giving the funds to the prime minister, the sources said.

Meanwhile, the prosecutors have questioned a former policy secretary of Hatoyama on a voluntary basis over the shady funds, the sources said.

The former secretary, who resigned in June, served as treasurer of Hatoyama’s fund-management organization, according to the sources. The aide was not identified.

The special squad is examining the source of more than ¥300 million that it believes was falsely declared in Hatoyama’s political funds reports.

The former secretary has denied his involvement in the alleged falsification. He said earlier: “The accounting of the fund-management body was controlled by a former state-paid secretary. There are so many mysteries” in Hatoyama’s accounting.

Under the the Political Funds Control Law, the former policy secretary could be punished even if he is not directly involved in altering the reports.

Criminal complaints have been filed by a Tokyo group against the ex-aide and a former state-paid secretary as well as Hatoyama.