Groups of 2 ministers filed shady fund reports
The Asahi Shimbun
01/11/2007 - Scandals involving shady political fund reports have surfaced around two Cabinet members that could increase the humiliation already weighing down the administration of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
The fund reports were submitted by the political organizations of education minister Bunmei Ibuki and agriculture minister Toshikatsu Matsuoka.
In both cases, the groups reported large sums in office expenses in their mandatory fund reports. But the offices in question turned out to be the Cabinet members' rent-free rooms in the Diet members' office building.
The shady reports are reminiscent of the ones submitted to the government by the political organization of former administrative reform minister Genichiro Sata.
I find myself thinking, "I wonder whatever happened to Nonaka Hiromu's old files?"
Seriously, someone out there has it out for Abe Cabinet in the worse way. Going public with all this stuff all at once indicates either that that someone doesn't know what he is doing or that that someone doesn't care anymore.
Read the whole article (related articles in 日本語 can be found here and here ) and then say to yourself, "Why is this coming out now?"
The latest accused of dodging political funds reporting requirements by listing entertainment expenses as office costs: LDP Secretary-General Nakagawa Hidenao and Democratic Party Policy Research Council Chairman Matsumoto Takeaki.
Ashes, ashes, all fall down.
Later - Okumura Jun in comments offers a timeline. No mystery here it seems--but no light at the end of the tunnel for the politicians.
It should also be noted that in the case of the DPJ's Matsumoto, the questionable claims come only a single year when his office was moving from Himeiji to Tokyo. The offices of the others under scrutiny made their questionable claims over the five years 2001 to 2005. The amount of money is also relatively minor in the Matsumoto case, less than a tenth of the amounts Ibuki Bunmei (the Topiary Accident) and Nakagawa the Barking Mad are being raked over the coals for.