French open new probe of Tokyo Olympics

Tokyo 2020 delegation members celebrate after IOC president Jacques Rogge announced the Japanese capital to be the winner of the bid to host the 2020 Summer Olympic GamesImage copyright
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Tokyo delegation members celebrate after being confirmed Olympic hosts in 2013

French prosecutors are investigating a $2m (£1.4m) payment allegedly made to the son of the ex-world athletics chief and whether it was linked to Tokyo’s bid for the 2020 Olympic Games.

Allegations of the sum allegedly paid to a firm linked to the son of Lamine Diack had appeared in the Guardian.

Both Lamine and his son, Papa Massata Diack, already face a corruption inquiry in France.

The Japanese government has insisted its Tokyo bid in 2013 was clean.

In March, French prosecutors had announced that an investigation into corruption in athletics was being widened to include the bidding and voting processes for the hosting of the 2016 and 2020 Olympics.

Black Tidings

The latest development involves 2.8m Singapore dollars allegedly paid to a company owned by Papa Massata Diack.

A statement said the French “National Financial Prosecution service was informed of two financial movements alleged to have been carried out in July and October 2013”.

The money was “labelled as ‘Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Bid’, coming from an account opened at a Japanese bank, for the profit of the ‘Black Tidings’ company in Singapore.

The statement added that payments “so close to the International Olympic Committee’s designation of the organising city for the 2020 Olympic Games, important parallel purchases by Black Tidings in Paris”, and other related issues had sparked a new inquiry.

Lamine Diack, now 82, was a member of the IOC and had a vote in the hosting but left the organisation afterwards in 2013. He is now banned from leaving France pending the investigations.

Papa Massata Diack is believed to be in Senegal.

Last December, he told the BBC he and his father were innocent of the allegations against them.

French open new probe of Tokyo Olympics}

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