After a monthslong probe, the government sought a court order on Friday to revoke the religious corporation status of the Unification Church amid a backlash over its dubious methods for soliciting donations, which came under renewed scrutiny in the wake of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s assassination last year.

If the court rules in favor of the government, the group, established in South Korea in 1954, would forfeit its religious corporation status along with the associated tax benefits, but it would still be allowed to continue religious activities.

“For a long time, since around fiscal 1980, a considerable number of followers experienced situations in which their ability to freely make decisions regarding donations and purchasing products was hindered,” education minister Masahito Moriyama said Thursday. “This resulted in financial losses that disrupted the peace in the lives of many followers and their family members.”