• Kyodo News


Two former secretaries to Democratic Party of Japan bigwig Ichiro Ozawa are planning to deny in trials at the Tokyo District Court that they filed false financial reports, sources said Wednesday.

Lower House lawmaker Tomohiro Ishikawa, 37, and Takanori Okubo, 49, have been indicted for failing to specify ¥4 billion in loans from Ozawa by his Rikuzankai fund management body in its financial reports for 2004 and 2005.

They have also been charged with failing to record the same sum in repayments from the fund to Ozawa in a report for 2007.

During earlier interrogations by prosecutors, both reportedly admitted to the alleged failure, which is a violation of the Political Funds Control Law.

But the sources said their lawyers plan to deny the allegation in pretrial procedures starting Sept. 24.

Ishikawa plans to deny his alleged intentional failure and dispute the credibility of his depositions admitting to it, while Okubo intends to claim that he was not involved in producing the financial reports, the sources said.

Ozawa has denied responsibility for the former secretaries’ failure and prosecutors have fallen short of indicting him.

But the Tokyo No. 5 Committee for the Inquest of Prosecution concluded in April that prosecutors should have indicted Ozawa for the allegation regarding the Rikuzankai reports in 2004 and 2005. The Tokyo No. 1 Committee for the Inquest of Prosecution meanwhile has concluded the prosecutors should have indicted Ozawa for the 2007 report.

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