TOKYO (TR) – In what could be yet another blow to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, the support group of newly appointed trade minister Yoichi Miyazawa allegedly spent political funds at an adult-themed bar in Hiroshima four years ago, it was learned on Thursday, reports the Sankei Shimbun (Oct. 23).
According to the report, Miyazawa, who was appointed by Abe to head the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry on Tuesday, reported a 18,230-yen bill from a session at an SM bar on September 6, 2010 as “entertainment expenses” on the group’s political funding report for that year.
Such an establishment typically provides live shows in which female hostesses use ropes and whips on customers in various stages of undress.
“It has been confirmed that Miyazawa himself did not participate,” a statement from the group read. “The details as to how this was [expense] was entered into the political funding report is under investigation.”
The ruling Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker is a native of Hiroshima. Miyazawa succeeded Yuko Obuchi after she resigned over questionable spending of political funds by her support groups.