Three arrested for alleged COVID subsidy fraud

Tokyo police have arrested three Japanese who are alleged to have fraudulently claimed coronavirus-related subsidies by working with a Vietnamese student.

Police say the suspects, the owner of an adult entertainment business and two others, fraudulently applied for the government program between July and August last year. They allegedly received about 18,000 dollars in subsidies.

They say the suspects filed applications using the names of other people, including the Vietnamese student, claiming that their business had taken a major hit from the pandemic. The suspects are said to have paid the collaborators part of the proceeds.

Police say the suspects also solicited other Vietnamese students and filed more applications using their names.

Police suspect that the three fraudulently claimed a total of about 900,000 dollars in the eight months through March.

They have not disclosed whether the suspects have admitted to the charges.