Japan minister dined with scandal-tainted exec ex-official

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TOKYO, Nov 15 (Reuters) A former top defence official embroiled in a scandal said he and senior ruling party politician Fukushiro Nukaga, now the finance minister, had dined with a defence contractor who was recently arrested on suspicion of embezzlement.

Former Vice Defence Minister Takemasa Moriya said under oath in parliament that former defence minister Fumio Kyuma had also dined with the contractor on separate occasion.

Media reports have said Nukaga, who has quit his defence minister post twice in the past, received cash from the contractor.

Nukaga has said that he returned the cash and he has denied having any special ties to the firm.

REUTERS JT SSC1057

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