Tokyo prosecutors: ex-justice minister, wife gave 1.7 million yen to buy votes

Tokyo prosecutors said in a statement on Thursday that ex-Justice Minister Katsuyuki Kawai and his wife, upper house lawmaker Anri, gave a total of 1.7 million yen to five people last year to help get her elected.

Both Kawais were arrested earlier on Thursday, in a blow to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe as he struggles with falling support.

(This story corrects headline to say 1.7 million yen, not 1.7 billion yen.)

Reporting by Kiyoshi Takenaka, writing by Elaine Lies; Editing by Hugh Lawson