(AP Photo/Charlie Riedel, File)

IOC marketing chair from Japan investigated for corruption

Tsunekazu Takeda was placed under formal investigation for “active corruption” on Dec. 10

In the latest blow to the International Olympic Committee’s efforts to rid itself of scandal, marketing head Tsunekazu Takeda is being investigated for suspected corruption related to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Takeda, who is also the president of the Japanese Olympic Committee, was placed under formal investigation for “active corruption” on Dec. 10, France’s financial crimes office announced on Friday.

French investigators are in the midst of a years-long and wide-ranging probe into sports corruption that is looking, among other things, at the bidding contests for the 2020 Olympics and other major sports events.

Takeda’s career in Olympic circles has ticked almost every box, starting with representing Japan in equestrian at the 1972 Munich Games and 1976 Montreal Games.

As the head of the IOC’s marketing commission since 2014, Takeda has overseen signing sponsor deals worth hundreds of millions of dollars, including new partnerships with Alibaba, Intel and Allianz.

READ MORE: Vatican launches track team of Swiss Guards, nuns

In a statement issued Friday by the Japanese Olympic Committee, Takeda denied any wrongdoing. The JOC said he was in Tokyo but gave no further details.

“The case is causing tremendous concern among the people who are supporting the Tokyo Games, but I will continue to co-operate in the investigation in order to clear any suspicion of me,” Takeda said.

The IOC ethics commission is scheduled to meet later Friday in Lausanne, Switzerland. Takeda could be provisionally suspended from Olympic duty, or offer to step aside during the investigation.

The Japanese Olympic Committee said it has conducted its own internal investigation and found no illegality involved in all payments made by the Japanese bid committee at the time.

The organizers of the 2020 Olympics referred questions to the JOC.

In Takeda’s Olympic career, he has led a national Olympic committee, been a vice-president of an Olympic sport’s governing body, equestrian, a chef de mission for Olympic teams, a sports director for a Winter Olympics — Nagano in 1998 — a Summer Games bid leader, an IOC member since 2012, and now chair of one of the most financially significant IOC panels.

Takeda also works closely with Sheikh Ahmad of Kuwait, the influential IOC member who has stepped aside from the IOC while awaiting trial in Geneva this year in a fraud case unrelated to Olympic business. Takeda is a board member of the global group of Olympic committees, known as ANOC, and the Olympic Council of Asia, both led by the Kuwaiti sheikh.

(Canadian Press)

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

UPDATE: Non-suspicious Peachland house fire sends two to hospital

The fire broke out early Saturday morning, two occupants were sent to hospital for smoke inhalation

Rockets prepare for biggest rookie camp in years

The 2019 rookie camp starts Aug. 19 with over 150 players

Injured hiker rescued in Peachland

The woman fell while hiking Pincushion Mountain on Friday

Journey Home co-chair reacts to executive director’s planned departure

Kyleen Myrah says a different skill set will be needed by Gaelene Askland’s replacement

Osoyoos woman who threatened mom and baby with butcher knife sentenced

Sharon Constance Forner pleaded guilty to one criminal charge and was sentenced

Kraft Heinz brand baby food recalled in B.C. due to possibility of insects

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says the product should not be consumed

First Nations women finally to be treated equally under Indian Act: Bennett

Canadian Feminist Alliance for International Action thanked the feds

Helicopter-riding dog Mr. Bentley now featured on cans of new B.C.-made beer

Partial proceeds from every pack go to Children’s Wish

Okanagan-Shuswap weather: A sunny start with afternoon clouds

Your weather report for Saturday, August 17th, 2019.

‘Easy Rider’ star Peter Fonda dies at 79

Actor and writer was nominated for an Oscar for co-writing the 1969 psychedelic road trip movie

Families receive support from ‘Living Flag’ fundraisers

A young man and a boy who both live with limited mobility were supported by the Canada Day events

Haida artist to perform at George Ryga Festival in Summerland

Interweavings features music from Terri-Lynn Williams-Davidson and Bill Henderson

Most Read