Akimoto set for release following $273,000 bail payment

Akimoto set for release following $273,000 bail payment

The former House of Representatives member’s release is pending after public prosecutors filed an appeal.

Japan.- The Tokyo District Court has approved the release of Tsukasa Akimoto on bail after the politician was arrested twice in relation to the 500.com bribery scandal.

The former House of Representatives member was forced to pay JPY 30 million (US$273,000) on Monday to secure his release on bail, although he has not yet been released pending an appeal filed by public prosecutors.

His bail requirements also stipulate that he cannot have contact with LDP lawmaker Takaki Shirasuka and former member Shigeaki Katsunuma, both of whom are also involved in the bribery case with 500.com.

Akimoto is accused of having received more than 13,000 dollars’ worth of bribes and travel expenses from online casino operator 500.com including flying by private jet to Macau in December 2017 when he visited a casino.

The accusations come on top of a previously alleged 18,000 dollars he received for giving a lecture at a symposium hosted by the firm in Okinawa in September of that year, paid to him via a consultancy company established in Tokyo by the former Policy Secretary.

According to lawyers, Akimoto has denied all charges and believes this payment was accounted for by his secretary.

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