Prosecutors demanded a three-year prison term and 3.38 million yen fine Tuesday for a former Finance Ministry official accused of receiving bribes from brokerages and a major bank.
Takashi Sakakibara, 38, former deputy director of the Securities Bureau’s general affairs section, is suspected of being treated to the tune of 3.45 million yen in the form of wining and dining by Nomura Securities Co., Daiwa Securities Co., Nikko Securities Co., the now defunct Yamaichi Securities Co., and Sumitomo Bank.
Demanding the prison term, prosecutors termed the defendant’s crime malicious and a serious case of bribery involving a great amount of money that caused significant damage to the public’s trust of the state’s financial administration and the role of public officials.
Despite his duty to supervise financial institutions, and being aware that the wining and dining was related to his official capacity, Sakakibara allowed himself to be entertained by the major brokerages and bank repeatedly without hesitation, they argued.
“The defendant glaringly lacks morality as a public servant and can hardly be said to have conducted serious soul-searching,” they said in a statement.
Prosecutors said he received bribes between 1993 and 1997 from the institutions nearly once a month in such forms as golf outings and dining out.
When he went on a business trip abroad, Sakakibara told the companies his schedule and was in turn provided with such services as courtesy cars, a sight-seeing trip with a translator and meals at expensive restaurants, prosecutors said.
Nomura allegedly wined and dined him to the tune of 1.83 million yen, Daiwa paid 376,000 yen, Nikko 449,000 yen, Yamaichi 368,000 yen and Sumitomo Bank about 430,000 yen, they said.
In return, Sakakibara favored the four brokerages by working for early introduction of a cumulative stock investment program the firms had hoped to introduce at the time, prosecutors alleged.
He also used his influence to get early ministry approval of a new financial product for
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