Skip to main contentSkip to main content
You have permission to edit this article.
Edit
In honor of Independence Day, The Citizen is providing unlimited access to all of our content from June 28th-July 4th! Presented by Cayuga Community College
AP

Japan suspect in COVID relief fraud deported by Indonesia

  • Updated
  • 0

TOKYO (AP) — A Japanese man accused of defrauding the government of 1 billion yen ($7.3 million) intended for small Japanese businesses hurt by the coronavirus pandemic was arrested on board a flight Wednesday after being deported from Indonesia, where he fled 1 1/2 years ago.

Mitsuhiro Taniguchi, 47, was arrested by Japanese police who accompanied him from Indonesia. He was taken to a police station after landing at Tokyo's Narita airport, Japanese media reported. Police confirmed his arrest.

Indonesian immigration official Douglas Simamora said earlier Wednesday that Taniguchi was deported after his passport was revoked by the Japanese government and because he had no Indonesian residence permit.

Indonesian authorities arrested Taniguchi on June 4 at a house owned by a fish trader in Lampung province. During his stay there, he described himself as an investor interested in fisheries. Indonesian authorities are investigating whether other people in that country were involved in the fraud scheme linked to Taniguchi.

In one case, Taniguchi and his accomplice Koichiro Ota, 34, who was separately arrested Wednesday, allegedly defrauded the government of 2 million yen ($14,700) by submitting a false application behalf of someone lacking eligibility for a subsidy, the Tokyo police said.

Taniguchi and a group of acquaintances allegedly submitted about 1,700 false applications for COVID-19 relief funds to the Japanese government and illegally received subsidies on more than 960 of those applications, taking with them about 1 billion yen ($7.3 million), reports say.

Police arrested Taniguchi’s ex-wife and their two sons — believed to be part of a larger group — in May on fraud allegations and were preparing to place Taniguchi on an international wanted list. The three suspects allegedly defrauded the government of 3 million yen ($22,500) in COVID-19 subsidies from June to August 2020.

The case surfaced in August 2020 when the office offering the subsidies consulted with Tokyo police. Taniguchi entered Indonesia two months later on an investor visa.


Jatmiko and Tarigan reported from Jakarta, Indonesia.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

0 Comments

Concerned about COVID-19?

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.

Related to this story

Most Popular

The pandemic-era federal aid that made school meals available for free to all public school students — regardless of family income levels — is ending, raising fears about the effects in the upcoming school year for families already struggling with rising food and fuel costs. A bill signed by President Joe Biden over the weekend is intended to allow summer meal distributions to remain widely available for students. It also gives higher reimbursement for meals to schools while providing some flexibilities to help them deal with increasing food prices and supply chain issues. Several states have taken it upon themselves to keep school meals free for all.

Tens of thousands of suburban swing voters who helped fuel the Democratic Party’s gains of recent years are suddenly becoming Republicans. Overall, more than 1 million voters across 43 states have switched to the Republican Party over the last year. That's according to voter registration data analyzed by The Associated Press. They include both former Democrats and those previously unaffiliated with either major party. The phenomenon is playing out in virtually every region of the country — red states, blue states, in cities and in small towns — in the months since President Joe Biden replaced former President Donald Trump.

The Supreme Court has ruled that Americans have a right to carry firearms in public for self-defense, a major expansion of gun rights. The court struck down a New York gun law in a ruling expected to directly impact half a dozen other populous states. Thursday's decision came with recent mass shootings fresh in the nation’s mind and Americans emotionally divided on the issue. Across the street from the court, the Senate sped toward passage of its own national legislation, a gun law modest in scope but still the most far-reaching in decades.  Justice Clarence Thomas wrote for the high court's 6-3 conservative majority.

Advisers to the U.S. government are recommending that COVID-19 booster shots used this fall be modified to better match more recent variants of the coronavirus. A final decision from the Food and Drug Administration is expected within days, and it will have to set the exact recipe for the change. Pfizer and Moderna tested shots updated against the omicron mutant that surged last winter. But those shots are already somewhat outdated, with relatives of omicron now the main threat. Advisers said they have no crystal ball for what might spread this fall.

The Supreme Court has stripped away women’s constitutional protections for abortion. It's a fundamental and deeply personal change for Americans' lives after nearly a half-century under the court's landmark Roe v. Wade decision. Friday's new ruling is likely to lead to abortion bans in roughly half the states. The ruling by the high court's conservative majority was unthinkable just a few years ago. It was the culmination of decades of efforts by abortion opponents, made possible by an emboldened right side of the court that has been fortified by three appointees of former President Donald Trump. The ruling came more than a month after the stunning leak of a draft opinion by Justice Samuel Alito.

The U.S. Supreme Court has overturned Roe v. Wade, the 1973 decision that had provided a constitutional right to abortion. The June 24 ruling is expected to lead to abortion bans in roughly half the states. In anticipation of the decision, several states led by Democrats have taken steps to protect abortion access. The decision also sets up the potential for legal fights between the states over whether providers and those who help women obtain abortions can be sued or prosecuted.

A court ruling is back in effect that blocks President Joe Biden from requiring federal employees to get vaccinated against COVID-19. A Texas-based federal judge had blocked the federal employee vaccine mandate in January. But a three-member panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans ruled the judge didn’t have jurisdiction and that employees opposed to the mandate should have pursued civil service remedies. Now, the full 17-member 5th Circuit court has decided to take another look at the issue. That means the Texas judge’s block on the mandate remains in effect.

Listen now and subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Google Podcasts | Spotify | RSS Feed | Omny Studio

Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.

Topics

News Alerts

Breaking News