House of Councilors lawmaker Anri Kawai was sentenced Thursday to a year and four months in prison, suspended for five years, for buying votes in the 2019 Upper House election.

The Tokyo District Court ruled that Kawai, 47, distributed money to local legislators in Hiroshima Prefecture in violation of the Public Offices Election Law. If the ruling is finalized, she will lose her status as a lawmaker.

The ruling and findings in her trial are expected to affect the case of her husband, Katsuyuki Kawai, a former justice minister who has been tried separately on vote-buying charges.