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Arrested lawmaker Muneo Suzuki attempted to ensure that a favored contractor won bids on public works projects by excluding competitors, sources said Saturday.

They said Suzuki ordered a senior official of the Hokkaido Regional Development Bureau to prevent two Hokkaido contractors from winning certain state-funded projects. The contractors were competitors of Shimada Kensetsu, a construction firm based in Abashiri, Hokkaido.

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