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Japan machine maker’s CEO sues govt, claiming illegalprobes

  • September 8, 2021
  • , Jiji Press , 6:26 p.m.
  • English Press

Tokyo, Sept. 8 (Jiji Press)–A Japanese chemical machinery maker’s CEO sued the government Wednesday seeking damages over criminal probes in which prosecutors ended up dropping charges against him and others.


Masaaki Okawara, 72, CEO of Ohkawara Kakohki Co., based in Yokohama, near Tokyo, filed the lawsuit with Tokyo District Court seeking about 560 million yen in damages from the state and the Tokyo metropolitan government.


Besides Okawara, a former director of the company and the bereaved family of a former company adviser also joined the suit.


Okawara, the former director and the former adviser were arrested in March last year by Tokyo’s Metropolitan Police Department, which alleged that they exported a spray dryer that might be repurposed to make biological weapons to China without permission from the trade minister.


The three consistently denied the allegations. The Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office indicted the three and the company, but it dropped the charges in July this year, citing difficulties proving their alleged wrongdoing.


The plaintiff side also claim that the three were detained for such a long time that the former adviser could not receive appropriate treatment for stomach cancer discovered while in custody.


The former adviser died in February after his detention was suspended in November last year due to a worsening health condition. A bail request for the former adviser had been rejected by the authorities.

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