TOKYO, Sept. 26 (Xinhua) -- An appeal trial started Wednesday in a false political funds reporting case implicating Ichiro Ozawa, a one-time power broker who was once the head of the ruling Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ).
The trial at the Tokyo High Court will look into whether Ozawa recognized the illegality of falsifications in reports by his political funds management body, Rikuzankai, in connection with a land purchase deal in 2004, and whether he conspired with his ex- aides in the move.
The trial was high profile in the country as the 70-year-old veteran is a former president and secretary general of the DPJ.
The Tokyo District Court acquitted Ozawa in April of conspiracy, ruling that although his former aides falsified the reports, it was possible that he did not recognize the act as illegal. Prosecutors later appealed the decision.
The three former aides to Ozawa, including lower house member Tomohiro Ishikawa, were all found guilty last year for the falsification of Rikuzankai's fund reports.
Ozawa now leads the People's Life First party after bowing out of the DPJ in July due to differences with Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda over his policy of hiking the sales tax rate.