Japanese prosecutors have begun talks with their Swiss counterparts to seek the return of money that Swiss authorities confiscated over alleged money laundering involving a key Japanese loan shark, according to sources.

But the prosecutors, dispatched by the Justice Ministry, are expected to face difficulties in their bid to get back 61 million Swiss francs (about 5.4 billion yen) seized from a Swiss bank account as part of an investigation because no arrangements exist between the two countries concerning the repatriation of crime-linked money.

If Japan gives up the repatriation, it is expected the 61 million Swiss francs will go to the coffers of the Zurich cantonal government and the Swiss federal government.

They seem to have exchanged opinions with Zurich cantonal prosecutors and some officials from the federal government over Japan’s request to repatriate the money from the frozen account under the name of Susumu Kajiyama.

Kajiyama is alleged to have run a network of 1,000 loan sharks in Japan for an affiliate of Yamaguchi-gumi underworld syndicate.

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