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Ex-trade ministry bureaucrat handed suspended term for drug use

TOKYO (TR) – A court here on Tuesday handed a former bureaucrat for the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) a suspended prison term for the importation and use of stimulant drugs, reports Kyodo News (Sept. 10).

At the Tokyo District Court, presiding judge Takaaki Miura said that the judgment — a three-year prison term, suspended for five years — handed to Tetsuya Nishida, 28, includes probation so that he is able to receive medical care for addiction.

“[The  defendant] stated that he was depressed at work, and that he sought a stronger effect while undergoing treatment, but that is not justification for the crime,” the judge said.

The prosecution had sought a term of three years and six months.

Tetsuya Nishida (Twitter)

According to the ruling, Nishida possessed 22 grams of kakuseizai, or stimulant drugs, found in the pages of a fashion magazine that arrived by air mail at Narita International Airport from the U.S. on April 15.

Nishida, at the time a section manager in an automobile division at METI, later used the contraband at his residence in Adachi Ward 10 days later.

On May 31, METI dismissed Nishida from his post.