A Mitsubishi Motors Corp. director was arrested Oct. 23 in connection with payoffs allegedly made by Mitsubishi to two “sokaiya” corporate extortionists.Yasuo Shimizu, 59, is suspected of conspiring with other MMC officials to pay off the racketeers with more than 9 million yen in cash in exchange for their silence at three MMC shareholder meetings during the past two years. He is the fourth MMC official to be held in the scandal. The automaker’s soccer team, the Urawa Red Diamonds, is a professional J. League soccer club also headed by Shimizu.Police are investigating the cash transfers, which involve several banks and manufacturers over several years, to see whether the payoffs are illegal under Japan’s Commercial Code, police sources said.

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