ufotable founder, Hikari Kondo, was sentenced to 20 months of prison with a 3-year suspended sentence after the Tokyo District Court found him guilty of evading taxes. Studio ufotable also received a ¥30 million (around US$264,000) fine.
According to the court’s ruling, Kondo hid the company’s income in the three business years through August 2018, evading some ¥109.3 million (around US$963 million) in corporate taxes and some ¥28.9 million (around US$255,000) in consumption taxes. The judge in the case stated that Kondo “had a strong intent” to evade taxes since he constantly asked his wife to falsify the information in the company’s books. Kondo’s wife was the accountant at the company.
Studio ufotable recently paid back around ¥139 million in taxes, while also apologizing for the situation. Following the verdict they apologized again, stating:
Our company and our representative have been convicted of a case of violation of the Corporation Tax Act. We sincerely apologize for the concern and inconvenience caused to the fans and other related parties who support our work.
Taking this opportunity, we will comply with laws and regulations and make further efforts to improve the environment for sustainable and better production.
Kondo received a suspended sentence because he paid back the taxes and filed a revised tax return. The prosecutors originally wanted higher fines and no suspended sentence. A suspended sentence means that he will not have to serve any prison time as long as he doesn’t commit a similar crime in the next 3 years.
Studio ufotable, founded in 2000, is well-known in the anime community. They produced a variety of fan-favorite shows, including Fate, The Graden of Sinners, and the Demon Slayer franchises. In addition to anime production, Ufotable also runs cafes and restaurants all over Japan and webshops for merchandise.
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Source: JP Times, Ufotable
Featured image: Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works, ©TYPE-MOON, ufotable, FSNPC ©TYPE-MOON/ufotable logo