Japanese singer Aska released due to lack of drug use evidence

Japanese folk rocker Aska was released on Dec 19, 2016, after Tokyo prosecutors decided not to indict him on drugs charges due to a lack of evidence.
Japanese folk rocker Aska was released on Dec 19, 2016, after Tokyo prosecutors decided not to indict him on drugs charges due to a lack of evidence. PHOTO: AFP

TOKYO (AFP) - Fallen Japanese star Aska was released on Monday (Dec 19) after Tokyo prosecutors decided not to indict him on drugs charges due to a lack of evidence, an official said.

The 58-year-old singer - one half of folk rockers Chage and Aska - was arrested last month after he called police to tell them he was being spied on at home by a hidden camera.

Police then visited his Tokyo home and arrested the singer, who was slurring on the call, on suspicion of using stimulants and MDMA.

It was his second arrest after he was given a three-year prison term, suspended for four years, in December 2014 for possession and use of the same drugs.

But prosecutors decided not to indict him in connection with the latest allegations, a spokesman for the prosecutors' office told AFP.

"Today, the prosecutors' office decided not to indict him," the spokesman said, citing a lack of evidence.

The singer reportedly told prosecutors that he had bluffed during a police urine test, handing in a vial of tea instead.

The spokesman did not comment on the reports.

Narcotics are heavily regulated in Japan and the police make much of high-profile arrests.

Chage and Aska made their musical debut in 1979 and remain hugely popular in Japan and other parts of Asia including Singapore, Hong Kong and Taiwan.