Mixed bathing with a female companion and 11.1 million yen in improper expenses… The surprising contents of the “improper expenses” of a former MITI bureaucrat that “lacks dignity. | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Mixed bathing with a female companion and 11.1 million yen in improper expenses… The surprising contents of the “improper expenses” of a former MITI bureaucrat that “lacks dignity.

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Tokita at the time he was transferred to the Defense Equipment Bureau (Image: Kyodo News)

It was admitted that, in general, every time Tokita arranged for female companions, the men would cover their private parts with towels in the open-air baths, while the women would wear bathrobes.

The 182-page report released on December 15 by energy-related company TOKAI Holdings (Shizuoka City, Shizuoka Prefecture, hereinafter “TOKAI”) contained a startling description of the “inappropriate use of expenses.

The company’s problems were the use and misuse of money by Katsuhiko Tokita, 77, who had served as president since June 2005. According to a report compiled by a special investigation committee made up of outside experts, he took mixed baths with female companions on about 44 occasions. The company incurred 33,920,000 yen in entertainment expenses, which included family members as dinner companions. He used company cars, including a Century, an Alphard, and a Mercedes-Benz, as luxury vehicles for transportation.

Tokita was originally a bureaucrat. In April 1968, after graduating from the University of Tokyo’s Faculty of Law, he joined the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (now the Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry). Since then, he has served as vice governor of Kyoto Prefecture, director general of the Defense Agency’s Equipment Bureau (both on secondment), and director general of the Small and Medium Enterprise Agency. It was in September 2002 that he became an advisor to “TOKAI” from the board of directors of Japan National Oil Corporation. According to company officials, Tokita was exempted from the mandatory retirement age of 70 set in the company’s internal regulations, and the decision to retire was left to Tokita himself.

Oni no Kiri no Kiri” (Oni’s Blade) for “information gathering

Tokita’s use of money has been called into question (from TOKAI’s website).

The trigger was an internal report. TOKAI began an investigation after receiving a report that Mr. Tokita was using money inappropriately. Tokita was dismissed from his position as president in September of this year on the grounds that there had been misconduct.

If the contents of the ‘inappropriate expenses’ revealed in the report are true, it is appalling,” said Mr. Tokita. As a way to gather information, he purchased manga on his Kindle e-reader. He subscribed to 21 issues of “Shooting Stars in the Twilight”, 19 issues of “The Blade of Demons”, 15 issues of “The Fable”, and so on. He was also approved for 33 overnight stays with women. Expenses for his wife’s massages and golf practice were also reported.

The most problematic case, which was deemed “undignified,” was an open-air mixed bath at a recreation facility in Tateshina, Nagano Prefecture. Since around 2004, when the guesthouse was established, female traveling companions had been invited to bathe with the guests. It is also known that a woman refused to take a bath, saying, ‘I wasn’t told about it,’ which caused a commotion. According to the report, the expenses suspected of fraud amounted to at least 11,105,000 yen. Tokita received an executive bonus of about 120 million yen in FY 2009,” said a reporter from the society section of a national newspaper.

Tokita, on the other hand, refuted the allegations in a letter submitted on December 4, as follows.

The administration department itself approves all of these expenses as expenses, and the suggestion that companion expenses, which are a part of these expenses, are my personal expenses is completely off the mark.

He has also told those around him that “I should be given more opportunity to explain myself.

Tokita remains a director of TOKAI. Based on the report, the company is carefully considering whether to proceed with Tokita’s resignation and take legal action to seek the return of the money.

Photo of the open-air bath where the mixed bathing took place, as shown in TOKAI’s report.
  • Photo: Kyodo News Kyodo News

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