Tokyo Olympics official accused of bribery

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Tokyo Olympics official accused of bribery

A company that was responsible for selling officially licensed stuffed toys of the Tokyo Olympics mascots is suspected of giving several million yen to a former executive of the Tokyo Olympic organizing committee in a series of bribery scandals last year, according to investigative sources.

The sources said that the committee was lobbied by Haruyuki Takahashi to extend favor to Sun Arrow Inc. over the sale of stuffed toys for the world sports event.

The latest revelation came after Takahashi, 78, was indicted earlier this month for receiving bribes totaling around 51 million yen $356,000 from business suit retailer Aoki Holdings Inc.

He was also served with a fresh arrest warrant for accepting bribes totaling 76 million yen from the major publishing company, Kadokawa Corp.

Takahashi, a former senior managing director of Japan's largest advertising agency Dentsu Inc., has been accused of requesting the use of ADK Holdings Inc. and Daiko Advertising Inc. regarding sponsor selection.

Investigators are expected to question those familiar with the advertising agencies' roles as early as next week.

Sun Arrow is known for selling stuffed toys with characters from Studio Ghibli's My Neighbor Totoro and Kiki's Delivery Service, among others, and also distributed stuffed toys of the mascots from the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics.