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Tokyo: Ex-NHK performer handed suspended term for use of stimulant drugs

TOKYO (TR) – The Tokyo District Court has handed a former performer for a children’s program on public broadcaster NHK a suspended prison term over the use of stimulant drugs, reports Sports Nippon (Sept. 21).

On September 18, an officer began questioning Kenichi Sawada, 49, on a road in the Kabukicho red-light district of Kabukicho. A subsequent analysis of his urine gave a positive result for kakuseizai, or stimulant drugs.

During questioning, Sawada admitted to the allegations, saying that he had most recently used stimulant drugs in a sauna in Kabukicho. “I wanted to enhance euphoria throughout my entire body,” the suspect was quoted by the Shinjuku Police Station.

On Monday, the court handed Sawada an 18-month prison term, suspended for three years. In handing down the ruling, the judge took into consideration that the defendant admitted to the crime. “Dependency, as well, seems to be an issue,” the judge said. “On the other hand, he has reflected upon his actions.”

Kenichi Sawada
Kenichi Sawada (Twitter)

At the time of the arrest, Police suspected that Sawada also used stimulant drugs in Osaka and Hyogo prefectures earlier in September.

Sawada on the program “Uta no Onisan” on NHK between 1996 and 2001.