SINGAPORE: Japan authorities have asked the Singapore Embassy in Tokyo to help bring back a diplomat for questioning over suspicions that he took nude images of a teen at a public bath in Tokyo. 

The Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department made the request through Japan’s Foreign Ministry, according to Japanese media reports on Tuesday (May 14).

The 55-year-old former counsellor at the Singapore Embassy in Tokyo is suspected of using a mobile phone to film a 13-year-old student in the dressing room of a bathhouse, reported the Mainichi Shimbun. 

A counsellor is a diplomatic rank for officers serving overseas, such as in an embassy.

The report added that Tokyo police are investigating the case for potential violations of the law related to the production of child pornography and the taking of sexual images. 

CNA has contacted Singapore’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) for comment. 


Yomiuri Shimbun reported that on Feb 27, the man used his mobile phone to secretly film the first-year middle school student in the changing room of a public bath. 

Staff members at the public bath in Tokyo’s Minato Ward called the police who, upon arriving, searched the diplomat’s phone and found “multiple naked photos of male customers”, according to Asahi Shimbun.

The diplomat then reportedly refused to go to the police station but told officers he had taken such photos in other public baths. He is said to have deleted about 700 such photos from his phone, which he told police he had taken in the six months leading up to the incident. 

MFA said in a previous statement that it was made aware of the allegations on May 1 after it was contacted by Japanese media outlets.

The ministry said the allegations were made against one of its officers who was previously on post in the Singapore Embassy in Tokyo.

“The staff (member) in question had completed his tour of duty as scheduled and returned to Singapore in mid-April 2024,” it said, adding that the officer did not inform the ministry about the incident until he was asked about it.

MFA said it expects all its staff to uphold the “highest standards of conduct” and to abide by the laws of their host countries.

The officer has been suspended from duties to assist in investigations. 

“We will cooperate with the Japanese authorities and take the necessary actions. We would also be prepared to waive diplomatic immunity to facilitate investigations if the alleged facts bear out,” the ministry said on May 2.

According to the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, a diplomat cannot be arrested. 


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