News analysis

Bribery scandal clouds Japan's integrated resorts plans

But experts say bad actors won't derail bid, and laud Tokyo for stamping out graft

A bribery scandal has muddied Japan's bid to launch integrated resorts (IRs), with the indictment of the ruling party lawmaker who was once in charge of steering the country's IR policy.

Tsukasa Akimoto, 48, was charged last week with taking 3.7 million yen (S$45,300) in bribes from the New York-listed, Shenzhen-based gambling operator 500.com. The sum included expenses for a trip to Hokkaido, where the company was keen to develop an IR.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on January 19, 2020, with the headline 'Bribery scandal clouds Japan's IR plans'. Subscribe