佐野 綾子Ayako Sano
- あや総合法律事務所 開設
・業務上横領事件 ： 無罪
・所得税法違反事件（クレディ・スイス集団申告漏れ事件第一審） ： 無罪
・強要未遂・強制わいせつ事件 ： 無罪
Ayako Sano had been in charge of economic research at Goldman Sachs Japan Co. Ltd. before becoming an attorney. Since starting practicing law, Ayako has been engaged in a wide range of cases on behalf of both individual and corporate clients, and currently serves as an outside director of listed companies. She also acts as a civil conciliator for the Tokyo District Court. Until now, she has won “not-guilty” verdicts as defence counsel in multiple criminal cases. These are unique achievements in Japan where the guilty rate of criminal cases is more than 99%.
Ayako has been representing both corporate and individual clients in a wide range of cases. These include contract negotiations, corporate law practices, labor disputes, intellectual property, bankruptcy, wills and inheritance, divorce, traffic accidents, real estate disputes, and medical malpractice among other matters.
She has served as a civil conciliator in civil law disputes such as construction, commercial contracts, real estate, etc. at the Tokyo District Court since 2018.
Ayako also defends clients in criminal cases (especially commercial and financial cases in which clients plead not guilty; please refer to “Cases Won”). In 2013, she became qualified to offer tax accountancy services under the Certified Public Tax Accountants Act and defends clients in tax audit cases.
Ayako has to date won “not-guilty” verdicts as defence counsel in three cases:
・In a corporate embezzlement case in March 2011
・In a tax evasion case in March 2013
・In an attempted coercion and indecent assault case in November 2014
Career and Professional Experience other than Legal Practice
Ayako was engaged in economic research at Goldman Sachs Japan Co. Ltd. before becoming an attorney.
After starting practicing law, Ayako has been involved in various activities such as
・a standing committee member of Daini Tokyo Bar Association in FY2012
・a guest lecturer at Hitotsubashi University School of Law since 2016
・an outside director of SKYLARK HOLDINGS CO., LTD. since 2019, which is Japan’s leading food service company listed on the First Section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange
・an outside director (Audit & Supervisory Committee member) of Metaps Inc. since 2021, which is a technology company listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange (Mothers) and provides a wide range of payment services and digital transformation (DX) support services, etc.
Publications (in Japanese)
・“Inconsistencies in the Prosecution’s Case Revealed by Careful Examination of the Books” Quarterly Keiji-Bengo, No. 71, p. 80, July 2012
・“A Case of Acquittal on Appeal Denying the Coerciveness of an Indecent Act” Quarterly Keiji-Bengo, No. 83, p. 70, July 2015
・“Money-related Legal Issues” HOUGAKU Seminar, No. 763, p. 33, August 2018
Lectures and Presentations
・“Making the Crossover from Another Industry” Lecture at Hitotsubashi University, June 2016
・“Legal Practice and Nurturing Legal Professionals in the Course of Globalization” Panel Discussion marking the 140th anniversary of Hitotsubashi University’s foundation, October 2017
Admitted in Japan, 2008
Daini Tokyo Bar Association
・Tax Law Study Group, Daini Tokyo Bar Association
・Bankruptcy Act Study Group, Daini Tokyo Bar Association
Ayako has a bachelor’s degree in economics from Hitotsubashi University in Tokyo and a Juris Doctor degree from the same university’s School of Law. As an undergraduate, she also studied in an exchange program at the Stockholm School of Economics.