New York state hit Japan's largest bank Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi-UFJ with a $250 million fine Thursday for handling money transfers that violated sanctions on Iran, Sudan and Myanmar.
The state's Department of Financial Services (DFS) said Mitsubishi-UFJ moved billions of dollars through its New York branch between 2002 and 2007 for state and private entities in Iran, Sudan and Myanmar, including entities on the US Treasury's blacklist.
In that period banking services and money transfers fell under US sanctions on the three countries.
To hide them, the DFS said the bank employees "systematically" removed information from wire transfer messages that could have identified the parties involved.
In all, the bank handled nearly 28,000 illegal transactions worth $100 billion in violation of the law, according to the DFS.
A total of six ruling and opposition parties resubmitted to the House of Representatives a bill to revise the Public Offices Election Law and to lower the voting age to 18 or older from the current 20 or older. The bill is highly likely to pass at the current Diet session. (The Japan News)
The popular "pear fairy" cartoon mascot Funassyi held its first press conference with the foreign media in Tokyo on Thursday, saying its unlikely path to success is a symbol of the country's admiration of perseverance in the face of adversity. (Japan Times)
One of the two 17-year-olds arrested over the killing of a 13-year-old boy last month along the Tama River in Kawasaki has admitted to harming the victim but said he was only following the orders of an older teenager also in custody, investigative sources said Thursday. (Japan Times)
One of the things that makes Japan such a compelling place is the country's long cultural history. The upkeep of centuries-old buildings can be extremely expensive, however, especially since traditional Japanese architecture is mainly wood, reed, and paper, which aren't exactly the sturdiest building materials. (rocketnews24.com)
A total of 706 incidents linked to "dangerous," or quasi-legal, drugs were detected by police in Japan in 2014, up 5.6-fold from the preceding year, the National Police Agency said Thursday. (Jiji Press)
A report released Wednesday by the International Narcotics Control Board revealed that Mexican drug cartels have extended their reach to Japan, where methamphetamine seizures have doubled compared to the previous year. (UPI)
Japan's idol world is quite…expansive, for lack of a better word. Even with the wide variety of groups running around, it can be hard to really tell them apart-though we have to say there was no mistaking Osaka's Obachaaan for any other group. (rocketnews24.com)
Microsoft Corp. cofounder Paul Allen said on Twitter Tuesday the Imperial Japanese Navy's World War II battleship Musashi has been found at the bottom of the Sibuyan Sea off the central Philippines. (Jiji Press)