Yuji Naka Arrested Again Over Insider Trading Allegations - Report
This time, the allegations are related to Final Fantasy VII: The First Soldier.
Yuji Naka, co-creator of Sonic and director of the infamous Balan Wonderland, has been arrested again on alleged insider trading charges surrounding Final Fantasy VII: The First Soldier. This comes after Naka's first arrest in November, for similar insider trading charges but on a different game, a new Dragon Quest title.
According to Asahi (via VGC), Naka and another Square Enix employee, Taisuke Sazaki, knew of Square Enix's plans to work with Ateam on Final Fantasy VII: The First Soldier. Naka and Sazaki are accused of buying Ateam stocks before an official announcement went live.
Naka reportedly purchased an estimated 120,000 shares in the company for around ¥144.7 million yen (approximately $1 million USD). Sazaki reportedly bought 91,000 shares for approximately ¥105 million yen (approximately $769,000) and also passed along the info to an acquaintance who also purchased shares. Sazaki and Naka reportedly earned hundreds of millions of yen from their alleged insider trading activities.
Back in November, it was reported by FNN that Naka allegedly knew Aiming studio would help develop Dragon Quest Tact and purchased the studio's shares in advance of an official announcement. Naka reportedly purchased 10,000 Aiming shares for about ¥2.8 million yen.
Naka left Square Enix in 2021 and as evidenced by his allegations that Square Enix treated him unfairly throughout Balan Wonderland's development, parted on acrimonious terms with the company.
It's unclear what's next in the investigation against Naka.