November 23, 2019 / 6:08 AM / 19 days ago

Japan's Hazama Ando found to have under-reported income: reports

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese tax authorities have found construction company Hazama Ando Corp under-reported income for years by booking fraudulent costs, media reports said on Saturday.

The reports, citing people familiar with tax authorities, said the builder was found to have under-reported income by around 250 million yen ($2.30 million) in the five years ended March 2018.

“Tens of employees” asked subcontractors for inflated or fictitious construction bills, and were repaid in cash once payments were made, Asahi Shimbun reported. The employees then used the cash for dining and other personal purposes, it said.

Calls to Hazama Ando’s general number in Tokyo were not answered on Saturday, although public broadcaster NHK said the company confirmed that authorities found irregularities. Japan tax officials were not immediately available for comment.

Fraud and accounting scandals have been recurring problems among Japanese companies over the past several years, including falsified books at Toshiba Corp and data manipulation by automakers.

Reporting by Tokyo Newsroom; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman

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