Asia Briefs: Japan's top finance official quits

Japan's top finance official quits

TOKYO • Japan's top finance bureaucrat resigned yesterday after a magazine said he had sexually harassed several female reporters, the latest blow for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe whose ratings have been hit by a series of scandals.

Administrative Vice-Finance Minister Junichi Fukuda denies the allegations but told reporters he resigned because he could not further disrupt work at the ministry.


Deadly home brew kingpin arrested

JAKARTA • Police have arrested the main suspect in a spate of bootleg alcohol poisonings thought to have killed dozens across Indonesia, with the booze kingpin facing life behind bars if he is convicted.

Samsudin Simbolon was caught early yesterday on a oil palm plantation in Sumatra, ending a nationwide search for a man whose bootleg operation has allegedly killed as many as 50 people in neighbouring West Java, said the police.


KL court awards MP Nurul damages

KUALA LUMPUR • The High Court in Kuala Lumpur has awarded damages of RM1 million (S$337,000) to Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar in her suit against ex-inspector-general of police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar and Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob.

Ms Nurul Izzah sued the duo for implying she had committed treason for meeting Jacel Kiram - the daughter of Jamalul Kiram III who claimed to be the Sultan of Sulu and is said to have led an intrusion into Lahad Datu in Sabah in 2013.


Indian minister mocked for claims

NEW DELHI • Netizens are mocking an Indian minister who claimed the Internet and satellite were invented hundreds of thousands of years ago by ancient Indians.

"Internet and satellite communication had existed in the days of Mahabharata. How could Sanjaya (the charioteer of king Dhritarashtra) give a detailed account... about the battle of Kurukshetra? It means Internet was there... the technology was there in this country at that time," Mr Biplab Deb, chief minister of Tripura, said on Tuesday, the Times of India reported.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 19, 2018, with the headline 'Asia Briefs'. Print Edition | Subscribe