• POLITICS & GOVERNMENT

Sonoura fined ¥1 million, barred from running for office for 3 years

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Kentaro Sonoura

The Tokyo Summary Court has ordered former House of Representatives member Kentaro Sonoura to pay ¥1 million over allegations that his political organizations underreported income from fundraising parties, The Yomiuri Shimbun has learned.

Prosecutors have issued a summary indictment against Sonoura on suspicion of violating the Political Funds Control Law.

According to sources, the Tuesday-dated summary order also prevents Sonoura from running in elections for three years.

If a fine is finalized for cases such as making false entries in a political funds report, a suspension of up to five years can be handed down, in principle.

The summary court might have decided three years was appropriate due to reasons including the fact that Sonoura has resigned as a lawmaker.

Sonoura, 50, will not be able to run in the next lower house election, which will be held before October 2025, when the terms of current members expire.

The indictment alleges Sonoura conspired with former secretaries to underreport income from parties in reports produced by the political organizations from 2018 to 2020.

The former secretaries were in charge of accounting at Sonoura’s office.

About ¥49 million in income and expenses was either falsely reported or omitted. Sonoura was allegedly involved in the underreporting of about ¥46 million.