• Kyodo

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A Kyoto Prefectural Assembly member was arrested Friday on suspicion of illegally falsifying the company registry of trucking firm Sagawa Express Co. to give the appearance that he is president of the firm, officials said.

Kihei Morita, 78, filed the falsified registry with the Kyoto Regional Legal Affairs Bureau in December, according to police.

The false registry gave the appearance that all Sagawa Express executives had been dismissed in a board meeting and that Morita had become president of the Kyoto-based company, police officials said. Morita does not even own any stock in Sagawa, they added.

Sagawa filed a formal complaint with police against Morita in early January after the case came to light.

Morita has claimed he is one of the rightful owners of Sagawa Express because he forked out the startup capital to help the late Kiyoshi Sagawa, the firm’s founder and former chairman, establish the company in 1962.

Morita has served in the prefectural assembly for five terms starting in 1983. He was leader of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party caucus in the assembly, but quit the party after the scandal broke out.

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