Former communications chief will not face drug charges
TOKYO—Japanese prosecutors have decided against indicting former Toyota executive Julie Hamp on drug charges. The 55-year-old American was allowed to walk out of Harajuku Police Station in Tokyo Wednesday.
Hamp, who had spent 20 days in prison for allegedly importing tablets of oxycodone into the country, made no comment upon her release.
Toyota, however, issued a statement again apologizing to shareholders for any “confusion or concern the recent events surrounding former Managing Officer Julie Hamp may have caused.”
The company also announced her replacement.
Shigeru Hayakawa, senior managing officer and a member of the company’s board of directors had been appointed chief communications officer, effective July 6. The position was held by Julie Hamp until her July 1 resignation. She was the highest ranking female employee in Toyota’s history.
Hayakawa, 62, has been with Toyota since 1977 and has held various positions within the company both in Japan and abroad.
Toyota also reaffirmed its commitment to diversifying in a statement issued Wednesday.
“We intend to learn from this incident by reinforcing our guiding principles of honoring the language and spirit of the law,” the company said.
“Furthermore, we will continue to strive to create a more secure working environment for everyone at Toyota around the world. We also remain firmly committed to putting the right people in the right places, regardless of nationality, gender, age and other factors, as we continue to take the steps necessary to become a truly global company,” it added.
In not pursuing charges again Hamp, Kyodo News reported that prosecutors “appeared” to take into account that Hamp’s actions were not malicious and that she already resigned from her position with the motor company.