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Ex-education ministry bureaucrat handed suspended term for drug use

TOKYO (TR) – A court here on Monday handed a former career bureaucrat for the education ministry a suspended prison term for the possession and use of stimulant drugs, reports TBS News (Aug. 19).

At the Tokyo District Court, presiding judge Shiho Akita handed Mitsuhiro Fukuzawa, a 44-year-old former adviser for the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, a two-year prison term, suspended for four years. The prosecution had sought a two-year term.

On May 28, law enforcement entered the residence of Fukuzawa in Shinjuku Ward and discovered 0.5 grams of kakuseizai, or stimulant drugs, and marijuana.

Investigators later searched the desk of Fukuzawa at the ministry and discovered 0.73 grams of stimulant drugs in a bag and syringes.

Police later accused Fukuzawa of using stimulant drugs on May 27.

Mitsuhiro Fukuzawa (Twitter)

“The amount of stimulant drugs possessed was relatively large, with more than half brought to the workplace,” Akita said in handing down the ruling. “Your dependence on stimulants is deeply rooted, which cannot be ignored.”

At the opening of his trial on July 31, Fukuzawa admitted to the allegations. “I used at the workplace as a result of stress caused by unreasonable treatment,” the defendant told the court.

Fukuzawa joined the ministry in 2001. At the time of his arrests, he was in charge of educational reform in high schools. He was dismissed from his post on July 26.