Tsugio Yukihira, chairman of Yamaichi Securities Co., officially stepped down August 6 as head of the Securities Dealers Association of Japan to take responsibility for alleged illegal payoffs to a “sokaiya” corporate extortionist.

Seiichi Kato, chairman of Okasan Securities Co., was appointed acting chairman of the industry association. Kato will hold the position “for the time being” until a new chairman is appointed, he told reporters. Kato said he has no intention of assuming the chairmanship.

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