Prosecutors Monday arrested former Japanese Cabinet minister Fumio Abe on suspicion of taking bribes from a land developer, Kyodo News Service and the NHK television network reported.

Until last month, Abe, 69, had served Prime Minister Kiichi Miyazawa as manager and treasurer of his faction in the ruling Liberal Democratic Party. He resigned the post after first reports of the scandal surfaced in Japanese newspapers.Abe is a member of parliament and former minister for Okinawa and Hokkaido development. Deputy Chief Prosecutor Takeo Takahashi had told a news conference earlier Monday that Abe could be arrested at any moment.

Takahashi said investigators had searched Abe's two residences and several offices.