TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested a 37-year-old celebrity doctor as a part of a investigation into a health insurance fraud carried out by organized crime members, reports Nippon News Network (Mar. 9).
Over a two-year period ending in 2014, Eriko Wakisaka, a former director of a clinic in Meguro Ward, allegedly fabricated patient records on multiple occasions to fraudulently collect 1.55 million yen in health insurance payments.
Police further allege that Wakisaka carried out the ruse with Kazuo Hayakawa, a 39-year-old executive at a consulting company. Police had previously accused Hayakawa for providing fake patients to a bone-setting clinic in Suginami Ward and a medical corporation in Chiba Prefecture for a similar fraud.
Police have also arrested multiple members of the Sumiyoshi-kai organized crime group for participation in the crimes. Starting in 2009, the ring is believed to have collected a total of roughly 120 million yen, which police believe was funneled to the gang.
Wakisaka often appears on television variety programs to speak about health-related topics. During those appearances, the doctor has garnered a reputation for lavish spending, once boasting of having no savings in spite of an annual salary of 50 million yen and regularly running up bills of nine million yen during a night out.
In 2014, a female sex worker in the Kabukicho entertainment district threatened to kill Wakisaka in a dispute over a bar host.
Wakisaka’s clinic is now closed.