Former Tokyo 2020 Executive Board member Haruyuki Takahashi is accused of receiving bribes ©Getty Images

Daiko Advertising Inc. is reportedly suspected of paying former Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee official Haruyuki Takahashi in return for favours for a client company during the sponsorship selection process, with investigators searching the company's offices yesterday.

Takahashi, who is an ex-Executive Board member, was arrested last month on suspicion of receiving JPY 51 million (£316,000/$364,000/€366,000) in bribes from retailer Aoki Holdings Inc, an official partner of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics.

According to unnamed sources reported by Japanese news agency Kyodo, Takahashi is alleged to have received a portion of a JPY 26 million (£161,000/$185,000/€187,000) payment made by Daiko to a consulting firm run by an acquaintance of Takahashi across three bank transfers.

Investigators from the Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office searched Daiko's offices, including those in Tokyo, on the suspicion of bribery.

It is claimed that Takahashi and his acquaintance pressed for the Organising Committee to use Daiko as an agent during the sponsorship selection process and that the client company, which is believed to work in the service industry, became a sponsor in 2018.

Daiko said in a statement it will fully cooperate with the investigation.

The advertising company is the latest organisation to be allegedly involved in the bribery scandal following allegations levied at Aoki Holdings and Kadokawa Corporation.

Kyodo cited a source that said Kadokawa Corporation paid JPY 70 million (£434,000/$499,000/€501,000) to an entity run by an acquittance of Takahashi's and prosecutors are looking into the reasons for the payment and whether any of it was transferred again.

The Tokyo 2020 sponsorship selection process has been embroiled with bribery allegations ©Getty Images
The Tokyo 2020 sponsorship selection process has been embroiled with bribery allegations ©Getty Images

The news outlet reported this payment was branded as a consulting fee and made after Kadokawa became a Tokyo 2020 sponsor in April 2019.

The publishing company’s chairman, Tsuguhiko Kadokawa, told Kyodo last month that he did not know whether it was under investigation.

Takahashi, former Aoki Holdings chairman Hironori Aoki and two more officials were arrested on suspicion of bribery last month.

A decision on charging the suspects is expected to be made today.

Prosecutors are also investigating alleged payments by Aoki Holdings to former Japanese President and Tokyo 2020 chair Yoshirō Mori.

The Tokyo District Public Prosecutors Office has claimed that Takahashi took bribes on more than 50 occasions between October 2017 and March 2022 to help the company get selected as a sponsor.

Takahashi has denied allegations relating to his relationship with Aoki.