# SONIC THE HEDGEHOG CO-CREATOR YUJI NAKA GIVEN SUSPENDED PRISON SENTENCE FOR INSIDER TRADING
Sonic the Hedgehog co-creator, Yuji Naka, has been sentenced to a suspended prison term and fined approximately $1.2 million (173 million yen) for insider trading, according to a report from Japanese news outlet Jiji [source]. Although the court initially handed out a 2.5-year prison sentence, it was suspended for four years, meaning Naka is unlikely to serve time behind bars unless he commits further offenses during that period.
Naka, who worked at Square Enix at the time, was arrested twice last year for his involvement in two separate insider trading incidents that occurred in 2020. In the first case, Naka and two colleagues purchased 162,000 shares worth around $332,000 (47.2 million yen) in the game developer Aiming before Square Enix publicly announced their collaboration on a mobile game based on Dragon Quest. This led to the arrest of the three men in November of that year [source].
The second incident, which occurred just a month later, involved Naka and another Square Enix employee buying 120,000 shares valued at over $1 million (144.7 million yen) in another games studio, Ateam, with whom Square Enix was planning to partner. Ateam had collaborated with Square Enix on the mobile game Final Fantasy VII: The First Soldier. The judge’s ruling applies to both of these cases [source].
Having joined Sega in 1983, Naka played a pivotal role in creating the iconic character, Sonic the Hedgehog. After leaving Sega in 2006, he joined Square Enix to work on the game Balan Wonderworld from 2018 to 2021, which received mixed reviews. Naka alleges that he was removed from the team six months prior to the game’s release and subsequently filed a lawsuit against Square Enix [source].
– [The Verge – November 18, 2022](https://www.theverge.com/2022/11/18/23465956/sonic-yuji-naka-arrested-insider-trading-scandal-game)