Japan Press Weekly
[Advanced search]
Past issues
Special issues
Fact Box
Feature Articles
Mail to editor
Mail magazine
HOME  > Past issues  > 2020 March 18 - 24  > Abe gov’t sued for suicide of ex-Finance Ministry official who was forced to falsify ‘Moritomo’-related documents
> List of Past issues
Bookmark and Share
2020 March 18 - 24 TOP3 [POLITICS]

Abe gov’t sued for suicide of ex-Finance Ministry official who was forced to falsify ‘Moritomo’-related documents

March 19, 2020

The wife of an ex-Finance Ministry Kinki Finance Bureau official who killed himself amid the scandal over the doctoring of “Moritomo”-related documents filed with the Osaka District Court on March 18 a damage lawsuit against the state and former chief of the ministry’s Financial Bureau, Sagawa Nobuhisa.

In the complaint submitted to the court, the plaintiff claimed that her husband, Akagi Toshio, committed suicide because he suffered from depression after being forced to falsify official documents related to the “Moritomo” scandal, and is seeking a total of 110 million yen in compensation from the state and Sagawa.

The “Moritomo” scandal surfaced in 2017 with the revelation of the sale of national land in Osaka’s Toyonaka City at an absurdly low price to the school corporation “Moritomo Gakuen”. In the scandal, it was alleged that Prime Minister Abe’s wife Akie was involved in providing the huge discount on the land sale.

In February 2017 in a Diet meeting, PM Abe in response to questions from opposition parties denied any involvement of his wife Akie and himself in the land deal. This remark led to the falsification of Finance Ministry documents which recorded details of the deal. The falsification work was assigned to Akagi.

In the same month, soon after PM Abe’s remark in the Diet, Akagi was ordered by his superior to make alterations to the documents in question and was forced to work around the clock on this job for two months. With the excessively long working hours and heavy mental stress associated with doctoring the records, Akagi in July developed a severe case of depression and committed suicide in March 2018.

At a press conference held after the filing, notes which Akagi kept during his work to forge the official records regarding the land sale to Moritomo were published. In the notes, Akagi wrote that the falsification was done following Sagawa’s instructions. The plaintiff’s legal team expressed its intention to call Sagawa to the witness stand.

The lawyers’ group also read out a message of Akagi’s wife. In the message, she said, “I really want to know the truth about who benefited from the falsification of the official documents which triggered my husband’s suicide.” She called on Sagawa to testify in court.

Past related article:
> Finance Ministry’s report: Falsification of Moritomo-related documents triggered by Abe’s remark in Diet [June 5, 2018]
> Suspicions about alteration of 'Moritomo'-related documents deepened by Sagawa's testimony: JCP Chair [March 28, 2018]
> Abe’s wife should explain her involvement in ‘Moritomo’ scandal before Diet [March 20, 2018]
> Abe’s wife-associated school corporation gets national land at exceptionally low price [February 11, 2017]
> List of Past issues
  Copyright (c) Japan Press Service Co., Ltd. All right reserved