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Insider trading scandal at Japanese biz paper

July 25, 2006

Prosecutors arrested an employee of Japan’s largest daily business newspaper Tuesday over alleged insider trading, according to an Associated Press story.

Kazumasa Sasahara, an advertising employee at the Nihon Keizai Shimbun’s Tokyo head office, is suspected of using information from legal notices submitted to the paper to make investment decisions, the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office said in a statement.

He allegedly invested $2.06 million in five companies between December and January, and made about $257,000 in profit, according to the statement.

Sasahara, 31, has admitted to the allegations, public broadcaster NHK said, citing unnamed prosecutor officials.

The Nihon Keizai issued a statement apologizing to readers and investors, and dismissed the worker Tuesday, according to Nihon Keizai spokesman Akiko Wakabayashi. The daily said it will also set up an internal investigation team.

Read more here.

This is not the first insider trading case involving a Japanese business newspaper this year. In February, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun apologized after it was discovered that one of its advertising employees was using access to inside corporate information to make trades and profited millions of dollars.

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