July 22, 2022

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Philippine DoJ asked to junk kidnapping complaint vs Okada

Lawyers of Japanese billionaire Kazuo Okada have asked government prosecutors in the Philippines to dismiss the kidnapping complaint against him for lack of evidence, according to a statement sent by his camp on Friday. 

His lawyers submitted a counter-affidavit that sought to dismiss the complaint for kidnapping and illegal detention during a preliminary investigation at the Department of Justice (DoJ) on Thursday, it said. 

Board members of Tiger Resort Leisure and Entertainment, Inc. including Hajime Tokuda last month filed the complaint, accusing Mr. Okada’s representatives of storming Okada Manila on May 31 and using brute force to compel officers of the resort to yield. 

In its statement, the Okada camp said Mr. Tokuda had “willingly surrendered his company ID, voluntarily agreeing to be taken home.” “A copy of CCTV footages showed Tokuda peacefully leaving the hotel’s premises and being escorted by security personnel.”  

“Tokuda was never under duress,” it said. “His personal phone was not taken from him and was not prevented by the security personnel that accompanied him from using the same.” 

During the preliminary investigation, the lawyers told prosecutors Mr. Okada would submit an affidavit joining the defense of the other respondents.  

The DoJ preliminary probe came on the heels of the Japanese billionaire’s “recent legal victories,” including an order by the Philippine Supreme Court to keep the status quo, allowing his reinstatement as chairman of Okada Manila, according to the statement. 

It also cited the dismissal by the Court of Appeals of the estafa charges against Mr. Okada. 

Mr. Okada was removed from Tiger Resorts as a shareholder, director and company chairman in 2017 by Universal Entertainment Corp. and Tiger Resort Asia Ltd. for alleged mismanagement. — Norman P. Aquino, John Victor D. Ordoñez and Revin Mikhael D. Ochave