Japanese Government Official Arrested for Assault

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    The Tokyo's Metropolitan Police Department detained Ono, 56, at approximately 12:30 a.m. on the 20th of May (local time) in connection with allegedly assaulting a person on a train that was traveling on the “Tokyu Denentoshi Line connecting Shibuya Station in Tokyo and Chuo-Rinkan Station in neighboring Kanagawa Prefecture,” Kyodo News reported.

    “Ono was captured around the train ticket gate at Sakura-shinmachi Station in Tokyo's Setagaya Ward by police officers who rushed to the scene following an emergency police call,” Jiji Press detailed.

    “Ono seemed to be on his way home and was heavily drunk at that time,” the news agency quoted unnamed sources in Tokyo's Metropolitan Police Department.

    Jiji Press said its sources said the victim did not sustain any injuries despite his claims to have been physically assaulted by Ono, who denied any memory of the incident that occurred on the 20th of May.

    Ono has been employed by the Japanese Ministry of Finance since 1989 when he joined the federal organization just after graduating from the University of Tokyo's Faculty of Law. The long-standing bureaucrat took on his current post as deputy vice-minister for coordination and policy planning in July 2021. Ono was appointed to key positions within the Finance Ministry as director of the Budget Bureau over his long career.

    “He assumed the deputy vice ministerial post in July last year, taking charge of policy coordination with the Bank of Japan. The post is regarded as a stepping-stone to vice minister, the ministry's top bureaucratic post,” the news site Japan Today noted on Friday.

    Japanese Finance Minister Suzuki Shunichi allegedly demoted Ono to an unidentified position in the minister's Cabinet Secretariat on May 20 when he learned of his arrest on charges of assault, according to Japanese-based Kyodo News Agency. While acknowledging that the finance ministry of Japan is still trying to verify the details of the incident, Suzuki told reporters on Friday that he considered the accusations concerning Ono “extremely regrettable” before apologizing for the incident. Suzuki made the comments to journalists in Germany following a Group of Seven (G7) Financial meeting on the 20th of May.

    “Tokyo police and Japan's top government spokesman, Hirokazu Matsuno, declined to confirm the arrest, reported widely by local media,” Reuters noted. 

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