Sonic the Hedgehog Creator Yuji Naka Arrested For Insider Trading

Yuji Naka, famed creator of Sonic the Hedgehog, has been arrested in Japan and charged with insider trading. Details allege that he used information gleaned with his time at Square Enix to purchase stock of development studio Aiming prior to the reveal of a new Dragon Quest collaboration. This information comes alongside news of the arrest of another former employee of Square Enix. Here’s everything we know so far.

Yuji Naka Arrested For Insider Trading

Yuji Naka

According to a report from the Japan Times, Yuji Naka was arrested for his alleged involvement in insider trading along with two other individuals. The report states that during his time at Square Enix, Naka learned of an upcoming collaboration with developer Aiming on a new Dragon Quest game. He then allegedly purchased 10,000 shares in January of 2020, ahead of the announcement of the project.

At the time of writing, the specifics of the charges are unknown. The stated value of Naka’s investment stands at 2.8 million yen, or about $25,000 USD at the time of the alleged purchase. However, reports also name Fumiaki Suzuki as well as former Square Enix employee Taisuke Sazaki in the case. In Japan, anyone found guilty of insider trading can be fined or sentenced to up to five years in prison.

Yuji Naka is best known for creating one of the most recognizable characters in gaming: Sonic the Hedgehog. Beginning as a 2D platform series, the blue blur has had many incarnations over the years. It’s even made the transition to 3D, with Sonic Frontiers as the latest series release. The games attempt to incorporate Sonic’s incredible speed for fast-paced and action-packed gaming. However, this was also the main source of criticism among players who did not have the quickest reaction times. Sonic Frontiers seeks to address this by putting Sonic in a huge open-world setting. However, designers claim that the game requires further development.