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    Upholding the law

    They’ve arrested Shingo Nishimura. I don’t see much in the Nikkei report that adds to what we’ve heard over the last week, up to this anticipatory report from a few hours ago:

    Opposition lawmaker [lower house, DPJ–SRK] Shingo Nishimura will likely be arrested today in connection with allegations he allowed a former employee to pose as a lawyer to work on out-of-court settlements, sources close to Osaka prosecutors and police said.

    They said two of the Lower House member’s aides likely will also be arrested.

    Police believe the aides introduced Nishimura, a member of Minshuto (Democratic Party of Japan), to 52-year-old Koji Suzuki in 1998.

    Suzuki, who formerly worked in Nishimura’s law firm in Osaka Prefecture, was arrested earlier this month on suspicion of mediating insurance settlements for traffic-related cases even though he is not a member of the bar.

    The sources said police suspect Nishimura permitted Suzuki to mediate in 40 or so settlements, all of which took place after December 2002.

    Plenty of fraud to go around these days. It’s alleged that Nishimura falsely claimed for tax purposes that Suzuki was a salaried employee of the firm but instead put the designated amount into an off-the-books fund.

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