Antitrust authorities take legal action over Tokyo 2020 bribery

Tokyo, Feb 28 (EFE).- The Japan Fair Trade Commission sued six companies Tuesday, including the country’s largest advertising agency, Dentsu, for allegedly rigging bids for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games test events.

Japanese financial authorities believe the companies, which also include the second-largest national advertising company Hakuhodo and event management firm Cerespo, colluded with Tokyo 2020 Deputy Executive Director Yasuo Mori to manipulate grants for tests.

A total of six companies and seven people, including Mori, will be brought to trial for this plot in question.

It is believed these companies would have negotiated in advance, in collusion with the organizing committee, the concessions to determine the winners of the bids for the organization of the test events of the last Japanese Olympic event, a violation of the country’s antitrust laws.

Mori was arrested earlier this month in connection with the case.

The test events of the Olympic Games. Tokyo 2020 were held between 2018 and 2021, prior to the postponed international competition, and intended to give organizers and sports federations the opportunity to test the operation of the events.

The irregularities would have affected events valued at a total of more than JPY40 billion (about EUR280 million), both the aforementioned sports tests and other orders that were granted to these companies in relation to the Games, according to details published by public channel NHK.

If the allegations were proven, “it would be really regrettable and I think it would negatively affect the image of the Olympic Games and of sport in general,” Japanese government spokesman Hirokazu Matsuno said Tuesday about the case.

Matsuno said the national sports agency is carrying out a study on the orientation of the organization of international competitions and will publish its findings in March.

This is the most recent judicial process in the framework of the investigation of the alleged irregularities and bribery around the sporting event held in the summer of 2021 in the Japanese capital, and which would have affected not only these tenders, but also the concession sponsorship of the games.

The general investigation started after the detection of the receipt of alleged bribes by one of the members of the organizing committee, Haruyuki Takahashi, and has affected important firms such as Dentsu, the Kadokawa publishing house and the Aoki suit store chain.

Several of those involved in the plot, including Dentsu, would have acknowledged the accusations during interrogations. EFE


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