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American Engineering hit with ¥180 million tax evasion fine

Date Posted: 2008-03-21

American Engineering Corporation, an American-owned company handling dozens of contracts across Okinawa, including with the US military, has been found guilty of tax evasion.

A Naha District Court has ruled American Engineering Corporation and its chairman are both guilty of concealing profits over a three-year period, and ordered to pay fines. Prosecutors had indicted American Engineering Corporation, a Ginowan City based company on charges of evading taxes in excess of ¥300 million. The court levied an ¥80 million fine on the company, saying it was taking into account the fact American Engineering had already paid substantial additional taxes, and had revised its accounting procedures.

The Naha District Court was much tougher on Robert Mark Ecksterstine, the company’s chairman. He was sentenced to 2½ years in prison, with a four-year stay of the sentence. The longtime Okinawa resident was also ordered to pay a ¥100 million fine.

American Engineering Corporation was found guilty of concealing sales over a three-year period from 2003~2005. In his ruling, the presiding judge said “the average rate the copany has evaded taxes was by hiding 58% of its profits. It’s too heavy a crime.”

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