Former Prime Minister Yoshiro Mori, who headed the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics Organizing Committee, was questioned by prosecutors on a voluntary basis over the corruption scandal involving a former executive at the body, it said. Friday from sources familiar with the matter.
Prosecutors have sought to establish a corruption case against Haruyuki Takahashi, who allegedly received money from two companies in exchange for helping them be selected as sponsors of sporting events.
Mori reportedly met with Takahashi and Kadokawa Corp officials. before the publisher was chosen as the sponsor of the Games in April 2019, according to the sources.
The 85-year-old former prime minister also met Hironori Aoki, the former chairman of business suit retailer Aoki Holdings Inc., around July 2017 through an introduction by Takahashi, the sources said. Aoki Holdings became a sponsor in October 2018.
An attorney representing Mori declined to comment on prosecutors’ questioning, while a spokesperson for Kadokawa also declined to comment on his meeting with Mori.
Regarding the ties to Aoki, the lawyer said earlier in a written response that Mori never spoke with Takahashi or Aoki about selecting sponsors.
Takahashi, meanwhile, told investigators that he introduced Aoki to Mori but never offered to choose Aoki Holdings as a sponsor, the sources said.
Takahashi was charged on Tuesday with allegedly receiving bribes totaling around 51 million yen ($357,000) from Aoki Holdings. He also received a new arrest warrant the same day for allegedly accepting bribes from Kadokawa.
Aoki was charged on suspicion of bribery.