From Mainichi Daily News in Japan:
Scandal-struck Farm Minister Toshikatsu Matsuoka commits suicide
Farm Minister Toshikatsu Matsuoka has been confirmed dead, hours after he was found hanging at his home and taken to hospital on Monday, according to police.
A secretary found Matsuoka, 62, hanging at about 12:18 p.m. at his Diet members’ residence in Tokyo’s Minato-ku.
He was taken to Keio University Hospital, where his death was confirmed at about 2 p.m.
Police suspect Matsuoka committed suicide after talking with a police officer assigned to guard him at about 10 a.m.
Opposition parties have criticized Matsuoka for claiming millions of yen in utility expenses for his office in the Diet members’ building, expenses which the government already covers.
More recently, it was revealed that Matsuoka’s office received a political donation from construction firms which received a contract for work tendered by the semi-governmental Japan Green Resources Agency (JGRA).
Prosecutors raided a Kumamoto Prefecture JGRA office in late May, suspecting that the bidding for the construction job was rigged.
In the wake of the scandals, many critics — including top LDP [government party] politician Kazuyoshi Kaneko — have been calling for Matsuoka’s resignation.
Translated from Dutch NOS TV:
The suicide by Matsuoka is two months before the elections of a new Senate.
The coalition of Prime Minister Abe risks losing its majority there.
See also here.
On the Japanese government site, Matsuoka’s official biography is here.
One wonders for how long it will stay there.