By KYOTA TANAKA/ Staff Writer
March 28, 2023 at 18:47 JST
A sign of Toshiba Corp. (Asahi Shimbun file photo)
The Tokyo District Court on March 28 ordered five former executives of Toshiba Corp. to pay compensation in a case involving corporate accounting fraud that came to light in 2015.
The five included Norio Sasaki and Hisao Tanaka, both former Toshiba presidents.
It was the first time for a court to recognize individual responsibility in the company’s corporate accounting fraud case, according to a representative of Toshiba.
But the court dismissed a compensation claim against the late Atsutoshi Nishida, another former president.
According to the court claim filed by Toshiba and its shareholders, the five failed to perform their duties in three instances in which the company did not post a provision for loss over domestic and overseas infrastructure projects in the appropriate fiscal year.
The five also failed to perform their duties in five instances in which the company overstated the profits from deals involving computers and video equipment businesses, according to the plaintiffs.
The plaintiffs sued 15 former Toshiba executives, seeking damages.
The former executives had argued that they did not have authority over accounting processing.
A third-party panel set up by Toshiba during its investigation determined that top executives pressured subordinates to achieve goals set too high, calling it a “challenge,” and regarded the practice as a problem.
The Financial Services Agency has ordered Toshiba to pay a record administrative penalty worth about 7.4 billion yen ($56.4 million) at the request of the Securities and Exchange Surveillance Commission.
The SESC considered filing criminal charges against the three former presidents for violating the Financial Instruments and Exchange Law.
But the SESC abandoned the effort after the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office told it that it would be difficult.
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