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Compensation awarded for ex-suspects over spray dryer exports

  • December 9, 2021
  • , Jiji Press , 1:16 p.m.
  • English Press

Tokyo, Dec. 9 (Jiji Press)–Tokyo District Court has ordered a total of 11.3 million yen in compensation to be paid to former suspects over exports of spray dryers that were allegedly able to be used to manufacture biological weapons, their lawyer revealed on Thursday.

 

The former suspects are Masaaki Okawara, 72, president of chemical machinery maker Ohkawahara Kakohki Co. and a former executive and a former adviser of the company, based in Yokohama, south of Tokyo.

 

They were arrested in March 2020 and later indicted on charges of violating the foreign exchange and foreign trade law. However, public prosecutors dropped the charges against them in July this year, saying that doubts had arisen about the convertibility to weapons of technology used in the products in question.

 

Since the arrest, Okawara and the former executive, Junji Shimada, 68, had been kept in detention for 332 days until they were released on bail in February. The former adviser was freed in November 2020, following his 240-day detention, after he was found to have stomach cancer. He died later.

 

In September, the company president and others filed a lawsuit under the criminal compensation law.

 

The Tokyo court decided Tuesday to pay them the maximum daily compensation of 12,500 yen under the law, or 4.15 million yen for Okawara and Shimada and 3 million yen for the deceased former adviser.

 

In the ruling, Presiding Judge Kiichi Hiraide said there are “sufficient grounds” for them to be found “innocent” if they had been tried for the dropped charges.

 

The lawyer, Tsuyoshi Takada, said the company president is pleased to see the word “innocent” in an official court document.

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