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469

113TH I NTERNATI ONAL TRAI NI NG COURSE
PARTI CI PANTS’ PAPERS
* Publ i c Prosecutor, Tokyo Di stri ct Prosecutors Offi ce,
Japan
INVESTIGATION OF CORRUPTION IN J APAN
Tamotsu Hasegawa*
I. CORRUPT PRACTICES BY
GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS IN
J APAN
Japan’s prosecutor ’s offi ces handl e and
pr ocess br i ber y offences commi tted by
gov er n men t offi ci al s . Accor di n g to
stati sti cs for 1997, ther e wer e about 170
government offi ci al s under arrest, of whom
150 wer e accu s ed of tak i n g br i bes .
Accordi ng to a breakdown by publ i c offi ce
of the accused, the l argest number recorded
was: 80 for l ocal gover nment offi ci al s,
fol l owed by 50 assembl y members of l ocal
gover nment. The r emai nder consi sted of
10 pol i ce offi ci al s and 10 offi ci al s i n the
Nati onal Tax Admi ni strati on.
I n Japan, as menti oned above, the
number of cases i n whi ch publ i c servants
ar e exposed as bei ng i nvol ved i n br i ber y
ar e few, but such cr i mes ar e car eful l y
pl anned and ar e secr eti ve i n natur e. So
the proporti on of cases that remai n hi dden
are rather more than wi th other cri mi nal
cases, and the actual number exposed
thr ough the cour ts i s r ather smal l . Thus
i n Japan, fi ndi ng out i l l egal acti ons by
publ i c ser vants, such as br i ber y, i s qui te
an i mpor tan t i s s u e for i n v es ti gati n g
authori ti es.
Ther e ar e typi cal exampl es i n whi ch
br i ber y i s commi tted by gov er n men t
of f i ci a l s i n J a pa n . Admi n i s tr a ti v e
bureaucrats exerci se thei r admi ni strati ve
r i ghts at thei r own di scr eti on, i n a br oad
sense. I nfor mati on on deci si on-maki ng
pr ocesses i s i nadequatel y di scl osed by
admi ni strati ve organi zati ons. Under such
ci rcumstances, bri bes are offered to secure
speci al busi ness favor s fr om gover nment
offi ci al s i n connecti on wi th the granti ng of
gover nment l i censes or the awar di ng of
government contracts for publ i c works.
These ki nds of br i ber y cases r ecei ve
publ i c attenti on. I n one such case, the Vi ce-
Mi ni ster of Heal th and Wel fare took a bri be
fr om a busi ness owner i n r etur n for the
gr anti ng of a constr ucti on subsi dy for an
aged per sons wel far e faci l i ty. I n another
case, an executi ve di r ector of a secur i ti es
company pr ovi ded a hi gh-r anki ng offi ci al
of the Mi ni stry of Fi nance wi th l uxuri ous
busi ness entertai nment, whi ch consti tutes
the offence of taki ng a bri be for favors gi ven
i n r el ati on to gover nment appr oval of a
fi nanci al product.
I n Japan , n omi n ati on i s made for
sel ecti on of contractors under a competi ti ve
bi ddi ng system. Contr acts to car r y out
pu bl i c wor k s a r e a wa r ded by l oca l
gover nments to the successful bi dder (s)
a mon g th e n omi n a ted con tr a ctor s .
Prospecti ve contractors have offered bri bes
to gov er nment offi ci al s i n r etur n for
f a v or i ti s m d u r i n g th e s el ecti on of
nomi nated bi dders. Government offi ci al s
have taken these br i bes fr om pr ospecti ve
bi dder s to di scl ose the l owest bi d pr i ce i n
the bi ddi ng pr ocedur e. These cor r upt
offi ci al s were accused of bri bery.
I n addi ti on to bri bery offences commi tted
by admi ni str ati ve bur eaucr ats, ther e ar e
many recorded occasi ons of members of the
Di et bei ng i nvol ved.
1
Di et members have
s t r on g bu s i n e s s con n e ct i on s wi t h
par ti cul ar i ndustr i es. They have been
1
The Di et i s the Japanese parl i ament.
PARTICIPANTS’ PAPERS
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RESOURCE MATERI AL SERI ES No. 56
k nown to appr oach an admi ni str ati ve
organ to formul ate an i ndustri al pol i cy that
i s advantageous to one parti cul ar i ndustry.
I n thi s pr ocess, the par ti cul ar i ndustr y
offers i nducements to the Di et members to
i nfl uence pol i ti cal deci si ons i n i ts favor.
Here are some exampl es of members of
the Di et bei ng i nvol ved i n bri bery. I n recent
y ea r s , th e Fa i r Tr a de Commi s s i on
attempted to accuse cer tai n constr ucti on
compani es of consul ti ng among themsel ves
to orchestrate predetermi ned exaggerated
bi ds for publ i c works before the bi ds were
opened. The chai r man of the Fai r Tr ade
Commi ssi on was subj ected to pol i ti cal
pr essur e fr om a member of the Di et, who
was consequentl y accused of r ecei vi ng a
br i be fr om the constr ucti on compani es to
prevent the proposed accusati on. Si mi l arl y,
i n a tax evasi on case, a member of the Di et
was accused of recei vi ng pol i ti cal donati ons
fr om many constr ucti on compani es, wi th
the sol e ai m of col l ecti ng the money for hi s
personal use.
I n Japan, those i n gover nment ser vi ce
shoul d never accept, for themsel f or thei r
f a mi l y, f a v or s or b e n e f i t s u n d e r
ci r cumstances whi ch mi ght be constr ued
as i nfl uenci ng the performance of hi s or her
gov er n men ta l d u ti es . I n gen er a l ,
gov e r n me n t e mp l oy e e s , i n cl u d i n g
offi cehol ders, adhere to the Code of Ethi cs
for Gover nment Ser vi ce. Br i ber y i s not
necessari l y rampant as a soci al custom. On
the other hand, Japan’s soci al str uctur e
a n d th e en v i r on men t s u r r ou n d i n g
gover nment empl oyees contai ns many
factor s that coul d be seen as a hotbed for
cor r u pti on . I n Japan , i n v es ti gati n g
author i ti es ar e under gr eat pr essur e to
expose cor r upt pr acti ces by gover nment
empl oyees, especi al l y by offi ce hol der s i n
the nati onal gover nment - hi gh-r anki ng
gover nment offi ci al s and member s of the
Di et.
II. BRIBERY INVESTIGATIONS OF
GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS
A. Public Prosecutor’s Involvement
in Bribery Cases that are
Exposed by Police Officers
I n Japan, the pol i ce force i s the pri mary
i nvesti gati ng authori ty i n cri mi nal cases.
I n pr i nci pl e, publ i c pr osecutor s conduct
suppl ementary i nvesti gati ons of cri mi nal
cases r efer r ed to them by pol i ce offi cer s,
befor e deter mi ni ng whether or not to
i nsti tute prosecuti on. A publ i c prosecutor ’s
offi ce i s an i ndependent i nvesti gati ng
author i ty, as ar e pol i ce stati ons. As a
gener al r ul e, these two i nvesti gati ng
authori ti es work i n cl ose cooperati on wi th
each other.
I n bri bery cases, pol i ce offi cers conduct
th e cr i mi n a l i n v es ti ga ti on i f th ey
themsel ves expose the l eads. To per for m
effecti vel y dur i ng the i nvesti gati on of a
bri bery case, pol i ce offi cers requi re a sol i d
understandi ng of i nvesti gati ve techni ques
and l egal i nter pr etati on. As the cour ts
make ever mor e compl i cated r ul i ngs that
expand the r i ghts of the defendants, the
l egal requi rements for the admi ssi bi l i ty of
confessi ons may appear di fferent i n certai n
juri sdi cti ons. Publ i c prosecutors are often
i nvol ved at the i ni ti al stage of cr i mi nal
i nvesti gati on, thus exerci si ng control and
super vi si on over the pol i ce wor k. Thi s i s
t o r e c t i f y i m p r op e r l y h a n d l e d
i nvesti gati ons and i l l -advi sed conduct on
the par t of l aw enfor cement offi cer s,
especi al l y i ncompl ete i nterpretati on of the
l aw and eval uati on of physi cal evi dence.
Good coop e r a t i v e r e l a t i on s a r e
mai ntai ned between publ i c pr osecutor ’s
of f i ces a n d pol i ce s ta ti on s . Pu bl i c
pr osecutor s and pol i ce offi cer s often hol d
meeti ngs to di scuss a par ti cul ar case i n
detai l befor e an i denti fi ed suspect i s
tr ansfer r ed fr om the pol i ce stati on to the
publ i c pr osecutor ’s offi ce. Even after the
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113TH I NTERNATI ONAL TRAI NI NG COURSE
PARTI CI PANTS’ PAPERS
case i s r efer r ed to the pr osecutor ’s offi ce,
the pol i ce mai ntai n a cl ose l i ai son wi th the
prosecutor ’s offi ce for competent col l ecti on
of physi cal evi dence.
B. Independent Investigation by
Public Prosecutors
I n J a pa n , a pu bl i c pr os ecu tor i s
a u t h or i z e d t o con d u ct a cr i mi n a l
i nvesti gati on i nto any type of cri me as he/
she sees fi t. I n addi ti on to cases referred
to them by the pol i ce, publ i c pr osecutor s
i denti fy parti cul ar cases and conduct thei r
own cri mi nal i nvesti gati ons.
Stati sti cs for 1997 show the number of
peopl e qu es ti on ed by pol i ce offi cer s
compar ed wi th suspects i nter r ogated by
publ i c pr osecutor s. The pol i ce offi cer s
questi oned about 150 suspects, rather more
than the 20 suspects i nterrogated by publ i c
pr osecutor s. The number of cr i mi nal
accusati ons i s smal l on the par t of publ i c
pr osecutor s, but the major i ty of br i ber y
offences commi tted by government offi ci al s
or members of the Di et were exposed i n the
cour se of i ndependent i nvesti gati on by
publ i c prosecutors.
Publ i c pr osecutor s ar e ex pected to
conduct pr el i mi nar y i nvesti gati ons of
br i ber y offen ces commi tted by offi ce
hol ders i n the nati onal government - hi gh-
r a n k i n g gov e r n me n t of f i ci a l s a n d
pol i ti ci ans. I n practi ce, publ i c prosecutors
per for m thei r i nvesti gati ve duti es dur i ng
i nvesti gati on of br i ber y cases. Thi s i s
par tl y because the publ i c pr osecutor i s a
ski l l ed pr acti ti oner of such di ver se ski l l s
as l egal i nter pr etati on and i nvesti gati ve
techni ques for whi te-col l ar cr i mes, and
partl y because the publ i c prosecutor ’s offi ce
i s i ndependent.
The Publ i c Pr osecutor ’s Offi ce Law
pr ovi des that no per son i n the offi ce of
publ i c pr osecutor can be r emoved nor
di sadvantageousl y tr eated, even by the
Mi ni ster of Justi ce, wi thout r easonabl e
cause. Moreover, the Law sti pul ates that,
for the purpose of protecti ng the exerci si ng
of pr osecuti on r i ghts, especi al l y for the
pu r pos e of el i mi n ati n g an y pol i ti cal
p r e s s u r e a n d i n t e r f e r e n ce of t h e
i n v es ti gati v e pr ocedu r es of a pu bl i c
prosecutor, the Mi ni ster of Justi ce may onl y
command the Pr osecutor -Gener al of the
Supr eme Publ i c Pr osecutor ’s Offi ce wi th
respect to i nvesti gati ons or prosecuti ons of
i ndi vi dual cases. Thi s means that the
Mi ni stry of Justi ce cannot i nterfere di rectl y
wi th cri mi nal i nvesti gati ons or the sol vi ng
of cr i mes con du cted by a n y pu bl i c
prosecutor. I n thi s way, the i ndependence
of the publ i c prosecutor i s secured. Publ i c
pr osecutor s r emai n neutr al i n exer ci si ng
thei r pr osecuti on r i ghts agai nst pol i ti cal
groups.
III. ORGANIZATION OF PUBLIC
PROSECUTORS OFFICES
As descri bed earl i er, publ i c prosecutors
ar e au th or i zed to con du ct cr i mi n al
i nvesti gati ons at thei r own di scr eti on, a
factor that i s characteri sti c of the Japanese
publ i c pr osecutor s system. Cr i mi nal
i n v es ti ga ti on r el i es h ea v i l y on th e
i nvesti gati ve duti es of publ i c prosecutors,
i n cl u di n g th e i n s ti tu ti on of pu bl i c
prosecuti on and the mai ntenance of publ i c
tri al s.
I n Japan, the publ i c pr osecutor ’s offi ce
has a speci al i nvesti gati ve department that
takes charge of i nvesti gati ons i nto bri bery
an d econ omi c cr i mes commi tted by
gov er n men t offi ci al s . Th es e s peci al
i nvesti gati ve departments are establ i shed
at the Di stri ct Publ i c Prosecutor ’s Offi ces
i n Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya. I n addi ti on,
speci al cr i mi nal depar tments have been
establ i shed at 10 di stri ct publ i c prosecutors
offi ces throughout Japan.
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At the Tokyo Di stri ct Publ i c Prosecutors
Of f i ce , t h e Sp e ci a l I n v e s t i ga t i on
Depar tmen t h as a total of 125 l egal
of f i ci a l s , comp r i s i n g of 40 p u bl i c
pr osecutor s and 85 publ i c pr osecutor ’s
as s i s tan t offi cer s . Th es e 40 pu bl i c
pr osecutor s ar e made up of one di r ector,
t h r e e d e p u t y - d i r e c t or s a n d 3 6
subordi nates. Al l 36 publ i c prosecutors are
pr ofessi onal s wi th four to 18 year s of
experi ence si nce assumi ng offi ce. They are
gr ouped i nto thr ee speci al i nvesti gati ve
teams h eaded by th e th r ee depu ty -
di rectors.
The fol l owi ng secti ons addr ess the
cu r r e n t s i t u a t i on of i n d e p e n d e n t
i nvesti gati ons conducted by the Speci al
I n v es ti ga ti on Depa r tmen t a n d th e
probl ems of i nvesti gati ve procedures.
IV. DETECTION OF A BRIBE IN
PROGRESS
The Speci al I nvesti gati on Depar tment
empl oys three i nvesti gati ve techni ques to
fi nd l eads for suspi ci ous acti vi ti es whi l e a
br i be i s i n pr ogr es s . Fi r s tl y, pu bl i c
prosecutors exami ne news coverage, such
as i n newspapers and magazi nes. Another
sour ce of i nfor mati on i s the questi on and
answer proceedi ngs duri ng the Di et or l ocal
gover nment assembl y sessi ons. Publ i c
prosecutors l ook for any suspi ci ous acti vi ty
conducted by gover nment offi ci al s or
pol i ti ci ans. Extensi ve i nter vi ews and
background i nvesti gati ons are i ni ti ated to
i d e n t i f y s u s p e ct s . I n p a r t i cu l a r ,
exami nati on of the contents of speeches
made by Di et or l ocal government assembl y
member s i s one i mpor tant i nvesti gati ve
techni que to sol i ci t l eads i n a br i ber y-i n-
progress case. Publ i c prosecutors al ways
moni tor tr ends i n the Di et and l ocal
gover nment assembl i es. I f a matter of
busi ness i nterest i s di scussed at a meeti ng
h el d by a par ti cu l ar cor por ati on or
or gan i zati on , th e mi n u tes ar e made
av ai l abl e for ex ami n ati on by pu bl i c
prosecutors.
Secondl y, a publ i c pr osecutor ’s offi ce
accepts compl ai nts or accusati ons fr om a
compl ai nant or accuser for cr i mes of
cor r upti on. The Speci al I nvesti gati on
Depar tment has a publ i c pr osecutor who
ta k es ch a r ge of a ccep ti n g wr i tten
compl ai nts or accusati on and l etters from
i nformants. Suspi ci ous si tuati ons worthy
of i n v es ti ga ti on a r e detected f r om
i n f or ma t i on con t a i n e d i n wr i t t e n
compl ai nts or accusati ons and anonymous
l etters. I n recent years, an empl oyee of a
corporati on accused an executi ve di rector
of a wrongful act. An executi ve offi cer of a
pol i ti ci an’s support associ ati on reveal ed the
cor r upt pr acti ces of the pol i ti ci an. These
i nsi der accusati ons ar e a major sour ce of
i nformati on for detecti ng l eads i nto ongoi ng
bri bery cases.
Thi rdl y, publ i c prosecutors l ook for si gns
of suspi ci ous acti vi ty duri ng i nvesti gati ons
i nto the cr i me i n questi on, thus addi ng
wei ght to the suspi ci on that some other
cr i mes have been commi tted. I n a tax
evasi on case, sei zed account books ar e
exami ned to i denti fy the fl ow of funds, thus
r eveal i ng whether br i bes wer e offer ed to
gover nment offi ci al s who coul d then be
accused of br i ber y. When an i denti fi ed
suspect or wi tness i s questi oned wi th
respect to cases of embezzl ement or breach
of tr u s t by ex ecu ti v e di r ector s of a
cor por ati on, statements ar e obtai ned
unexpectedl y to detect cor r upt pr acti ces,
thus l eadi ng to the prosecuti on of bri bery-
i n-progress.
V. INVESTIGATIVE TECHNIQUES
USED BY THE SPECIAL
INVESTIGATION DEPARTMENT
Dur i ng the cour se of i nvesti gati on of a
br i ber y case, the Speci al I nvesti gati on
Deparatment conducts a thorough search
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for evi dence to col l ect as many physi cal
i tems of evi dence as possi bl e. Sei zed
evi dence i s exami ned to pr ove an al l eged
offence of corrupti on. A search for evi dence
usual l y begi ns i n the ar ea to be r ai ded,
whi l e the suspect i s under ar r est. I n a
ser i ous cr i me, al l peopl e pr esent ar e
mobi l i zed whi l e the rai d i s conducted and
ph y s i cal ev i den ce s ear ch ed for. Th e
number of peopl e mobi l i zed dur i ng the
conducti ng of speci fi c tasks often exceeds
100. Al l evi dence recovered i s sei zed duri ng
the rai d, i ncl udi ng account books, busi ness
di ari es, and any other i tems rel ated to the
al l eged offence. Sei zed evi dence i s often
p a ck ed i n h u n d r ed s of cor r u ga ted
cardboard boxes duri ng a rai d on the offi ces
of a bi g company. The sei zed evi dence i s
then exami ned by publ i c pr osecutor s i n
detai l . They are then used as evi dence that
a cri me was commi tted.
Secondl y, dur i ng an i nvesti gati on i nto
bri bery, i t i s i mportant to cl ari fy the source
of funds offer ed as br i bes and how they
wer e used. To l ocate the sour ce of funds
for bri bes requi res a thorough anal ysi s of
account books. To thi s end, the Speci al
I nvesti gati on Depar tment di spatches
publ i c prosecutor ’s assi stant offi cers to the
Nati onal Tax Col l ege and a Regi onal
Tax ati on Bur eau to dev el op sk i l l s i n
maki ng an anal ysi s of account books. Some
publ i c pr osecutor ’s assi stant offi cer s
r ecei ve i nstr ucti on i n book k eepi ng at
v oca t i on a l s ch ool s . Th e s e p u bl i c
pr osecutor ’s assi stant offi cer s, who have
a cqu i r e d a wor k i n g k n owl e d ge of
bookkeepi ng, are assi gned to speci al tasks
- th e an al y s i s of ban k depos i t s l i ps ,
voucher s used for busi ness tr ansacti ons,
and l edgers, thus pl ayi ng an i ncreasi ngl y
i mpor tant r ol e i n conducti ng fi nanci al
i nvesti gati ons.
Thi r dl y, publ i c pr osecutor s conduct
i n ten s e qu es ti on i n g of s u s pects or
wi tnesses to obtai n thei r statements to
deter mi n e th e tr u th abou t a fact i n
questi on. Bri bery i s a careful l y pl anned and
conceal ed cri me, maki ng i t di ffi cul t to prove
because physi cal evi dence i s not easy to
gath er. So a s tatemen t made by an
i denti fi ed suspect or wi tness i s extremel y
vi tal to ensure that successful evi dence i s
presented i n court. Moreover, the fact that
the money r ecei ved was a br i be i s qui te
di ffi cul t to pr ove wi thout a confessi on.
Publ i c pr osecutor s do thei r best to make
pr epar ati on s by col l ecti n g obj ecti v e
e v i d e n ce b e f or e b e g i n n i n g a n y
i nter r ogati on. Thi s pr ocedur e assi sts the
publ i c prosecutors i n obtai ni ng a statement
fr om an i denti fi ed suspect or wi tness. A
statement obtai ned fr om an i denti fi ed
suspect or wi tness i s checked agai nst any
avai l abl e backgr ound i nfor mati on on the
suspect or wi tness, thus establ i shi ng the
cr edi bi l i ty of the statement. Fi nal l y, the
p u bl i c p r os ecu t or ’s r ecor d of or a l
statements i s pr epar ed and pr esented as
evi dence i n court.
As des cr i bed ea r l i er , th e Speci a l
I nvesti gati on Depar tment fol l ows basi c
i nvesti gati ve techni ques and procedures for
detecti n g l eads du r i n g th e cou r s e of
i ndependent i nvesti gati on i nto br i ber y
cases. No speci al authori ty i s del egated to
the Speci al I nvesti gati on Department. No
speci al i nvesti gati ve techni ques ar e used
for cr i mi nal i nvesti gati ons. I n a br i ber y
case, cri mi nal i nvesti gati ons conducted by
the Speci al I nvesti gati on Depar tment
refl ect the breadth of practi cal experi ence,
wor k i ng k nowl edge, and i nvesti gati ve
methodol ogi es on the par t of each publ i c
prosecutor.
VI. CHALLENGES TO BRIBERY
INVESTIGATIONS
Publ i c prosecutors i n today’s soci ety face
many chal l enges. Seri ous cri mes such as
bri bery often resul ts i n l engthy, exhausti ve,
a n d h i g h l y c o m p l e x c r i m i n a l
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i nvesti gati ons. Thi s r equi r es a heavy
al l ocati on of manpower. As descr i bed
e a r l i e r , t h e Sp e ci a l I n v e s t i ga t i on
Dep a r t men t of t h e Tok y o Di s t r i ct
Prosecutor ’s Offi ce - the l argest prosecuti on
team - has onl y 40 publ i c pr osecutor s
assi gned to cri mi nal i nvesti gati ons. As an
effecti ve way of managi ng a compl ex
i nvesti gati on i nto ser i ous cr i mes such as
bri bery and l arge-scal e economi c cases, the
manpower shortage i s repl eni shed by the
di spatch of addi ti onal publ i c pr osecutor s
fr om other depar tments or other Di str i ct
Prosecutors Offi ces throughout Japan. I n
a worl d of frequent and dramati c changes
i n i nformati on technol ogy, soci al atti tudes
and l egal opi ni on, cr i mi nal offences ar e
l i kel y to become mor e and mor e compl ex
i n th e fu tu r e. Con du cti n g compl ex
i nvesti gati ons i n an effi ci ent and pr oper
ma n n e r r e q u i r e s i mp r ov e me n t of
i nvesti gati ve methodol ogi es, as wel l as an
i n cr e a s e i n t h e n u mbe r of p u bl i c
prosecutors i n offi ce.
I n addi ti on, cri mi nal i nvesti gati on i nto
br i ber y poses a major pr obl em - how to
secur e the appear ance of an i denti fi ed
suspect or wi tness. As Japanese ci ti zens
become i ncr easi ngl y awar e of thei r l egal
ri ghts, the suspect has ful l opportuni ty to
contact thei r defence counsel pr i or to
questi oni ng. I f i denti fi ed suspects or
w i t n e s s e s a r e s u mmon e d b y t h e
i nvesti gati ng authori ti es, they often refuse
to appear. Such suspects or wi tnesses
refuse to tal k duri ng questi oni ng. To cope
w i t h t h e s e n e w t r e n d s r e q u i r e s
con s i d e r a t i on t o b e gi v e n t o t h e
i n t r od u ct i on of n e w i n v e s t i ga t i v e
techni ques, such as an i mmuni ty system.
I n contrast, Japanese ci ti zens have strong
i n h i b i t i on s a b ou t a d op t i n g n e w
i n v e s t i ga t i v e t e ch n i qu e s , s u ch a s
exempti on fr om l egal pr oceedi ngs and
entrapment.
Thi s si tuati on woul d cause another
pr obl em i n Japan. The i nvesti gati on’s
progress i s often hi ndered by the sui ci de of
i ndi vi dual s bei ng questi oned or i mportant
wi tnesses, a contr i buti ng factor that has
s i g n i f i c a n t e f f e c t on c r i m i n a l
i nvesti gati ons. I n Japan, a per son bei ng
questi oned often commi ts sui ci de to avoi d
any i nconveni ence bei ng caused to thei r
organi zati on or i mmedi ate supervi sor i f he/
she bel ongs to an organi zati on. I n recent
year s, news medi a tends to di scl ose the
natur e of an al l eged offence and the
i nvesti gati on’s pr ogr ess. The sui ci de of a
p e r s on be i n g qu e s t i on e d i s of t e n
a t t r i b u t a b l e t o t h e d i s cl os u r e of
i nvesti gati ve i nfor mati on thr ough news
medi a.
I n a bri bery case, a confessi on obtai ned
fr om an i denti fi ed suspect or wi tness
consti tutes extremel y i mportant evi dence.
Another pr obl em i s how to establ i sh i n
court the vol untary nature and credi bi l i ty
of a confessi on. I n a br i ber y case, a
confessi on obtai ned fr om an i denti fi ed
suspect at the cri mi nal i nvesti gati on stage
i s often revoked by the accused, who deni es
the vol untary nature and credi bi l i ty of the
confessi on i n cour t. When the cr i mi nal l y
accused chal l enges the vol untar y natur e
and cr edi bi l i ty of the confessi on made
dur i ng i nvesti gati on, thei r ar guments i s
that he/she was i nti mi dated i nto confessi ng
beca u s e h e/s h e wa s l ock ed i n t h e
i n ter r ogati on r oom du r i n g i n ten s i v e
questi oni ng.
I f the vol untar y natur e and cr edi bi l i ty
of confessi ons i s tested at tri al , any publ i c
p r os e c u t or s w h o c on d u c t e d a n
i nvesti gati on of the case i n questi on wi l l
be cal l ed to testi fy i n court to establ i sh the
facts about the ci rcumstances under whi ch
the i nter r ogati on was conducted. The
admi ssi bi l i ty of a vol untar y confessi on
ob t a i n e d d u r i n g i n t e r r oga t i on i s
establ i shed i n court by a publ i c prosecutor
475
113TH I NTERNATI ONAL TRAI NI NG COURSE
PARTI CI PANTS’ PAPERS
who testi fi es that the contents of the
vol untar y confessi on match the objecti ve
evi dence and statements made by al l the
par ti es i nvol ved. I f ther e i s a possi bi l i ty
that the vol untar y natur e and cr edi bi l i ty
of a con f es s i on i s tes ted i n cou r t,
consi derati on shoul d be gi ven to the use of
vi deo or tape recorders for transparency of
the i nvesti gati ve process.
To prevent the i nvesti gati ng authori ti es
from pl aci ng over-rel i ance on a confessi on,
and to faci l i tate pr osecuti on of a br i ber y
cr i me, the bur den of pr oof shoul d be
changed or presumpti on regul ati ons shoul d
be provi ded for. These effecti ve procedures
shoul d be taken i nto consi derati on.
VII. PREPARING FOR COURT
I n a br i ber y case, the defence counsel
and defendants have a l egi ti mate ri ght to
test the admi ssi bi l i ty of physi cal evi dence
pr esented i n cour t by publ i c pr osecutor s.
When prosecuted bri bery or economi c cases
often i nvol ve compl ex fact fi ndi ng and
requi re a comprehensi ve l i st of al l physi cal
evi dence, the publ i c i nvesti gator ’s r ecor d
of or a l s t a t e me n t s a n d wi t n e s s e s
i nterrogati ons. These procedures requi re
enormous effort to establ i sh i n court that
the al l eged cr i me was commi tted. The
Tokyo Di str i ct Publ i c Pr osecutor ’s Offi ce
has a Publ i c Tr i al Depar tment and a
Speci al Publ i c Tr i al Depar tment - an
addi ti onal department assi gned to bri bery
or economi c cases. These depar tments
present truthful , objecti ve i nformati on that
i s effecti ve i n establ i shi ng the gui l t of
cri mi nal s.