The chairman of Mitsubishi Motors Corp. said on Wednesday that he knew nothing of the company’s involvement with two “sokaiya” corporate extortionists or alleged illegal payoffs, but will step down from the chairmanship to take responsibility.

MMC allegedly paid money to two racketeers to prevent them from disclosing embarrassing or compromising information about the firm at its shareholders’ meetings. Four MMC executives have so far been arrested in connection with the case.

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