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OSAKA — A former lawyer who filed criminal complaints against a retired political kingpin in the 1990s was arrested Thursday for allegedly embezzling tens of millions of yen from several of his clients.

The Osaka District Public Prosecutor’s Office arrested Takuto Kimura, 54, in Tokyo.

Investigation sources said several complaints have been filed against Kimura, who lost his qualification to practice law in October 1998 due to bankruptcy, including one by a woman in Takarazuka, Hyogo Prefecture.

According to the woman’s complaint, Kimura pocketed about 6.5 million yen she had entrusted to him to pay back bank loans. Kimura had been asked to dispose of her debts by removing mortgages on her house and land.

The former lawyer’s court receiver said Kimura has been indebted to the tune of more than 1 billion yen since his stock investments failed. He still owes about 400 million yen to his former clients.

Kimura became known as a procitizens lawyer after he represented the victims of a huge scam in the mid-1980s targeting tens of thousands of unsuspecting people. Kimura served as a court receiver in the case.

He also organized about 200 other lawyers to file criminal complaints against the late kingmaker Shin Kanemaru, a former Liberal Democratic Party vice president, in 1992 in connection with the retired politician’s alleged tax evasion.

But Kimura quickly lost his financial base and the public’s trust when he became heavily indebted after the bursting of the asset-inflated bubble economy in the early 1990s and was hit by a barrage of troubles with his clients.

He was declared bankrupt in October 1998, after a receiver for a bankrupt electrical engineering company in Osaka Prefecture sought his bankruptcy on the grounds that he failed to hand over company assets worth about 35 million yen.

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