Police have raided Toyota Motor Corp.’s headquarters in Toyota City, as well as its offices in Tokyo and Nagoya, following the arrest a senior American executive on suspicion of drug law violations.
Julie Hamp, Toyota’s newly appointed head of public relations, has been arrested on suspicion of importing a controlled substance into Japan.
Toyota President Akio Toyoda said last week that he believes Julie Hamp did not intend to violate the law.
It is unclear what authorities were looking for in the raid, which is common after an arrest.
Toyota spokesman Ryo Sakai told Reuters news agency that the company would not comment because an investigation is ongoing.
Julie Hamp is the highest ranking female executive in Toyota’s history.
She was arrested on June 18 on suspicion of importing oxycodone, a narcotic pain killer, into Japan. The substance is tightly controlled in the country.
Police said the drugs were in a parcel that Julie Hamp had posted to herself.
Julie Hamp told police she brought the drugs into Japan to help with pain in her knees, Kyodo News reported.
VIDEO New car sales in the US posted the best month in more than four years, with Toyota Motor showing the biggest rise.
Toyota saw sales rise 42% in September. Honda reported a jump of 31%, while Chrysler sales increased 12%.
Analysts said buyers in the US were taking advantage of low interest rates and cheap financing.
The US car industry’s recovery has been a boon to the US economy in recent months.
Industry-wide sales were up 12.8% in September compared to a year earlier, to 1.19 million cars and light trucks.
Calculated on an annualized basis that is 14.94 million vehicles, the highest rate since March 2008 according to Autodata.
Analysts said the increased demand for passenger vehicles comes after consumers in the US delayed buying new cars during the recession which went on till 2009.
That pushed the age of vehicles on the road up, and now those consumers are looking for replacement cars.
“I think in general with the economy chugging along at about 1.5% to 2% that we are gradually seeing people come back,” said Ford chief economist Ellen Hughes-Cromwick.
Japanese carmakers continue to show the biggest gains as they rebound from a supply shortage caused by the earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.