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Toyota's Top Female Executive Resigns After Arrest

Toyota Motor Corp's Managing Officer and Chief Communications Officer Julie Hamp speaks to media during a news conference in Nagoya, central Japan, in this photo released by Kyodo on June 18.
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Reuters/Landov
Toyota Motor Corp's Managing Officer and Chief Communications Officer Julie Hamp speaks to media during a news conference in Nagoya, central Japan, in this photo released by Kyodo on June 18.

Julie Hamp, Toyota Motor Corp.'s first senior female executive who was appointed head of public relations just weeks ago, has resigned after her arrest for allegedly importing the prescription painkiller oxycodone in violation of the country's narcotics laws.

Toyota in a statement today said Hamp resigned Tuesday, and the company accepted her resignation "after considering the concerns and inconvenience that recent events have caused our stakeholders."

As Scott reported June 19, "A total of 57 pills were discovered by Japanese customs officials on June 11 inside a package that Hamp mailed to herself from Kentucky, declaring the contents to be a necklace." Oxycodone is legal in the U.S. with a prescription.

Hamp, who was arrested June 18, has denied the charges. She told authorities she did not think she had imported an illegal substance, police said. Prosecutors must decide whether to indict Hamp by July 8. She is in detention, but has not been charged with a crime.

Hamp became Toyota's most senior female executive in April. The Associated Press adds: "Her appointment in April had been highlighted by Toyota as a step toward promoting diversity."

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Krishnadev Calamur
Krishnadev Calamur is NPR's deputy Washington editor. In this role, he helps oversee planning of the Washington desk's news coverage. He also edits NPR's Supreme Court coverage. Previously, Calamur was an editor and staff writer at The Atlantic. This is his second stint at NPR, having previously worked on NPR's website from 2008-15. Calamur received an M.A. in journalism from the University of Missouri.