Yuji Naka, the co-creator of Sonic the Hedgehog and former Square Enix director has reportedly been arrested by Tokyo District Public Prosecutors’ Office Investigation Department for an alleged insider trading scheme, according to The Verge via Fuji News Network.
Naka alongside former Square Enix employees, Taisuke Sazaki and Fumiaki Suzuki have been accused of purchasing a significant amount of stock in developer Aiming between December 2019 and February 2020. The accusation is that the parties involved attempted to make a profit while knowing of the existence studio’s pre-announced mobile title before the public, Dragon Quest Tact – a collaboration mobile game project between the studio and Square Enix. Sazaki and Suzuki reportedly together purchased ¥47 million (over $335,000 USD / $448,000 CAD) while Yuji Naka on the other hand purchased ¥2.8 million (over $20,000 USD / $26,000 CAD) in Aiming’s stock share price.
FNN: Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office arrested 57-year-old game creator Yuji Naka in context of insider trading related to new installment from popular Dragon Quest franchise.https://t.co/KhsPBB676m
“We have been fully cooperating with requests from the Securities and Exchange Surveillance Commission. As the investigation by the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office is underway, we will continue to fully cooperate with their investigation. We deeply regret the great concern this has caused to all concerned. We have dealt with this incident strictly, including internal disciplinary actions taken against the suspected employees,” Square Enix said in an official statement.
This isn’t the first time Yuji Naka has been in the news this year, as this investigation on Naka follows the Sonic the Hedgehog co-creator calling out his former employer, Square Enix back in April and giving his side of the Balan Wonderworld‘s development where he unexpectedly removed from his role as the game’s director.