Julie Hamp, the former female manager that resigned from her position at Toyota Motor Corp., has been released from police custody on Wednesday following Tokyo prosecutors’ decision not to indict her for a suspected drug offense.
Hamp, a US citizen, was arrested June 18 after she was suspected of illegally importing the painkiller Oxycodone into Japan, a prescription drug that can only be brought in the country after the importer receives government approval. Hamp had been for a very brief period the automaker’s chief communications officer and first female managing officer after her appointment back in April. She opted to resign from the world’s largest automaker last week even though the company and president Akio Toyoda publicly expressed their support for her. According to an official at the Tokyo District Public Prosecutor’s Office, the prosecutors have also taken into account the “social penalty” from her resignation from Toyota. Local media also reported earlier this week there was little chance she would be indicted as prosecutors considered there was no evidence of criminal intent in the case, as her father sent her the pills for her to cater for knee pain.
Hamp, 55, was a former General Motors Co and PepsiCo Inc executive, being promoted to her new, top executive post by Toyota just this April. The company has been trying to diversify its management ranks, long dominated by Japanese men, even as the automaker has long reached globalization levels. She came to Toyota in North America in 2012 and her relocation to Tokyo had just been completed last month.