Civic groups in Japan have filed a complaint against former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and three other officials this month on suspicion that they have failed to disclose diners and parties with booze provided for free for Japan’s drinks giant Suntory.
The complaint says Abe attended dinner parties where alcoholic beverages were supplied for free by Suntory between 2017 and 2019 at publicly funded cherry blossom viewing event, according to Japan News.
This new complaint emerged after Abe was charged in 2020 for misusing public funds that omitted about ¥30 million (US$220,000) in dinner party costs. And the new complaint filed this month alleges that beer and other alcoholic beverages provided by Suntory totalling ¥ 450,000 (3300) were not disclosed.
Suntory however said it only provided beverages for free for a 2016 dinner party.
“We supported the dinner parties as we thought it would be a great opportunity to let people know about our products,” a company official was quoted as saying.
Shinzo, the longest running Japanese Prime Minister, stepped down in 2020 due to chronological digestive disease after serving for nearly eight years as Japan’s leader.