Four bribes to Vietnam official tied to PCI exec

Kyodo News

A former executive of construction consultancy Pacific Consultants International is suspected of bribing a Vietnamese official four times between 2003 and 2006 to get a government road construction project in Ho Chi Minh City, sources said Tuesday.

The bribes allegedly paid by former PCI Managing Director Kunio Takasu, 65, may have totaled about ¥300 million, the sources said.

Takasu allegedly handed the bribes to the head of Ho Chi Minh City’s public works bureau, they said.

Takasu was arrested Monday together with three other former and current senior PCI officials on suspicion of sending a total of $820,000 to the Vietnamese official on two occasions in December 2003 and August 2006.

Also, Takasu is suspected of visiting the bureau office around May 2003 and around 2004 and providing the official with packages containing U.S. currency, the sources said.

The three other suspects are Masayoshi Taga, 62, a former PCI president; Haruo Sakashita, 62, a PCI board member; and Tsuneo Sakano, 58, a former head of PCI’s Hanoi office.

PCI had agreed to kick back about 10 percent of the value of the order to the Vietnamese official, they said.

Sakano, who was PCI’s Hanoi office chief, accompanied Takasu in the first three rounds of meetings with the Vietnamese official while a subordinate of Sakashita did so in the third round.

Sakano was present in the first round of meetings, when Takasu handed the official the bribes, the sources said.