While Japan is poised to launch its casino gambling industry, a Japanese lawmaker who had been facing investigations in relation to alleged ties with a Chinese gambling operator has been arrested.
On Wednesday, a ruling party lawmaker, who has been campaigning for casinos in the country was arrested after the investigative authorities suspected that the parliamentarian had received 3.7 million yen in bribes from a Chinese casino operator.
Tsukasa Akimoto, a 48-year-old member of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Liberal Democratic Party, had been facing investigation and last week the investigative agencies raided his offices and home.
Following his arrest, the opposition is coming stronger with a campaign against the government’s move to establish casino resorts in Japan. They are actively demanding to ban casinos in the country.
The allegations against Akimoto is that he received 3 million yen in cash from a Chinese gambling company in Tokyo back in September 2017.
Akimoto is said to have received favors from 500.com a Chinese company listed on the New York Stock Exchange.
Japan To Have Three Integrated Resorts
Japan is already working towards hosting integrated casino resorts in the country, three of them in the first phase. The competition to host a casino in Japan is equally tough both among cities that want to host a casino and gambling operators across the globe vying for a casino license in Japan.
Japan’s casino industry is expected to be one of the biggest once it starts welcoming guests. According to analysts at Sanford C. Bernstein, the casino industry in Japan would generate about $8 billion in revenue annually.