Full of excuses and no remorse… The “letter of apology” sent by Kentaro Sonoura, a former member of the House of Representatives, to his supporters is appalling. | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Full of excuses and no remorse… The “letter of apology” sent by Kentaro Sonoura, a former member of the House of Representatives, to his supporters is appalling.

He resigned from the Diet last December for violating the Political Funds Control Law. ......

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Mr. Sonoura is interviewed by the press at the end of November last year. He resigned from the Diet in December of the same year and has since closed his office in his hometown of Chiba.

Here is an A41-sheet letter titled “Apology. The sender is Kentaro Sonoura, 50, a former member of the House of Representatives, who was found guilty of violating the Political Funds Control Law in January of this year.

The letter was mailed to his supporters in early February and contained a letter of apology and a draft of an opinion letter submitted to the Tokyo Summary Court by his lawyer. Although he apologized to his supporters, he seemed to be saying that his secretary was ultimately responsible for the incident and that he had “no remorse. It is extremely regrettable.

said a man living in Chiba Prefecture.

Sonoura is a former LDP member (Aso faction) who has been elected five times. The Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office is investigating him for listing party and other income as approximately 40 million yen less than it actually was in the income and expenditure reports for the fund management organization he represents and the LDP’s Chiba Prefecture 5th electoral district branch for the years 2006 through 2008. In December of last year, he resigned from the Diet. In January of this year, a summary order for a fine of 1 million yen and a three-year suspension of his civil rights was finalized.

Mr. Sonoura is from the Yomiuri Shimbun, where he worked as a reporter and in public relations. After serving as policy secretary to then Minister of Internal Affairs and Communications Taro Aso, he was first elected in 2005. He had experience as an aide to the prime minister and deputy secretary general of the party, and was a person of some promise,” said a reporter in the political section of a national newspaper.

A local supporter of the party is indignant, saying, “In the end, we don’t know anything more about him.

The letter of apology sent to the supporters this time describes a part of the process, as if to say, “It was the secretary’s fault.

In the course of the investigation, I learned that the former secretary had been paid several hundred thousand yen a month as salary for many years, even after her resignation, without informing me.

Of the proceeds from the party, over 6 million yen was cashed in and taken back to the secretary’s home.

The magazine visited Mr. Sonoura’s home several times to ask him for more details, but he did not respond to our inquiries. The party has just nominated a former United Nations official as its official candidate for the supplementary election to be held in April following Sonoura’s resignation. In anticipation of the supplementary election, Mr. Sonoura should provide a detailed explanation to his supporters.

Mr. Sonoura sent a letter of apology. The letter only describes his secretary, saying, for example, “I accepted the explanation of a veteran secretary.
  • Interview and text by Hironori Jinno (nonfiction) Hironori Jinno (nonfiction writer) PHOTO Mainichi Newspapers/Afro (Mr. Sonoura)

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