Julie Hamp: Toyota bigwig busted for importing painkiller oxycodone into Japan
Toyota executive Julie Hamp, the highest-ranking woman in the Japanese automaker’s history, was busted attempting to import – some say smuggle – prescription painkillers into Japan. Customs agents converged on a Tokyo hotel and confiscated nearly 60 oxycodone tablets.
Writes the Wall Street Journal: “Japanese police on Thursday arrested Toyota Motor Corp. executive Julie Hamp, who is in charge of corporate communications for the auto maker, alleging she tried to import tablets of the painkiller oxycodone from the U.S. A police spokesman said Ms. Hamp, who is American, denied the allegation and said she didn’t believe she imported narcotics.”
The tablets were found hidden inside of a package that was delivered to Hamp at the hotel. The package had a US shipping address, reportedly shipped by Hamp to herself in Tokyo.
The 55-year-old Hamp denied committing any crime. If she is found guilty of drug smuggling, she could face up to ten years incarceration inside of a Japanese prison.
Foreigners traveling into Japan cannot bring narcotics like morphine, oxycodone, or hydrocodone without obtaining written permission. The U.S. Embassy provides clear warnings about Americans traveling into Japan, stating that those who “fail to follow Japanese law may be arrested and detained.”
Toyota issued a statement, backing Hamp, writing: “Toyota has been made aware of Miss Hamp’s arrest but has no further facts in light of the ongoing investigation by authorities,” the automaker said. “We are confident, however, that once the investigation is complete it will be revealed that there was no intention by Miss Hamp to violate any law.”