Japan man who used fake lawmaker’s pin ‘wanted to feel like a VIP’

A fake House of Representatives member’s pin confiscated by the police

A man who allegedly used a fake Diet member’s lapel pin to enter government offices has had the first hearing of his trial at the Tokyo District Court.

Kanato Fujimoto, 22, admitted to the charges during his arraignment on Wednesday, which included breaking into buildings and theft.

Fujimoto allegedly entered the Marunouchi Police Department building in Tokyo’s Chiyoda Ward and stole two armbands in June. In August, he allegedly entered the Foreign Ministry and a building housing offices of the health ministry and other agencies, both located in the ward, pretending to be a House of Representative member.

Prosecutors asserted in their opening statement that Fujimoto had repeatedly broken into buildings housing government ministries and agencies from around June at the latest.

The prosecutors also read out an affidavit from Fujimoto, in which he said he had purchased the lapel pin online and that he was satisfying his desire for approval by having the guards salute him and entering places where ordinary people couldn’t go. He also said he “wanted to feel like an important person.”

A damage report submitted by the Foreign Ministry to the police alleged that Fujimoto said, “I’m lower house member Suzuki” and walked away when a security guard approached him, according to prosecutors.