The Tokyo District Court handed down suspended prison sentences Monday to six former Dai-Ichi Kangyo Bank executives in connection with the bank’s illicit payments to “sokaiya” corporate extortionist Ryuichi Koike.Presiding Judge Kiyoshi Kimura sentenced former DKB Senior Managing Director Kenji Tanaka, 60, and Takeo Fukushima, 57, former managing director in charge of loan screening, to eight months in prison, suspended for three years. Prosecutors had demanded eight-month stints behind bars for each.Hiroshi Inotsume, 56, a former managing director in charge of general affairs, and Tatsuo Shibuya, 54, former head of the bank’s general affairs department, were sentenced to six months in prison, with a three-year suspension. Former Managing Director Michiyoshi Kusajima, 51, and Takushi Manabe, 50, former vice head of general affairs, were given six-month prison terms, suspended for two years. Prosecutors had sought six-month prison terms for the four.The six defendants listened to the ruling in silence. Kimura called the payoffs “organizational crime” by top DKB management and noted the crimes involved enormous amounts of money and were repeated over a long period of time. The payoffs strengthened connections between the company and the racketeers, the judge added. “The acts of the defendants violated the spirit of the Commercial Code, and should be harshly criticized,” he said. The Commercial Code bans firms from giving financial benefits to racketeers.The six were sentenced for providing Koike, 55, with illicit loans ranging from 3.782 billion yen to 8.879 billion yen on separate occasions from July 1994 to September 1996 to buy his silence at the bank’s annual shareholders’ meetings in 1995, 1996 and 1997, according to the ruling.Part of the money provided by DKB enabled Koike to acquire stocks in Nomura Securities Co., Nikko Securities Co., Daiwa Securities Co. and the collapsed Yamaichi Securities.

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