The Tokyo District Court on Wednesday rejected bail requests from former Justice Minister Katsuyuki Kawai and his lawmaker wife, Anri, who have been indicted on a charge of vote-buying during her Upper House election campaign last summer.
Katsuyuki Kawai, a House of Representatives member, and his wife, a member of the House of Councilors, were indicted on July 8 for violating the election law by handing out cash to politicians and supporters in Hiroshima Prefecture to gain their support in the July 2019 election.
According to the indictment, Kawai handed out about ¥29 million ($270,000) cash to 100 people including local politicians between March and August last year. His wife is accused of conspiring with him on cash handouts worth ¥1.7 million to five individuals between March and June.
The Kawais, who will lose their Diet seats if they are found guilty and the rulings are finalized, deny the charge, according to sources close to the matter.
The two are expected to receive their court rulings within 100 days of their indictment. For trials involving election-related crimes, the Public Offices Election Law urges courts to swiftly deliver rulings, typically within 100 days.
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