• Kyodo


Another Toyota Verblitz player was arrested Thursday on suspicion of possessing cocaine, police said.

Steven Yates, 35, has admitted to being in possession of a small amount of cocaine found in a plastic bag at his home in Nagoya the same day, the police said.

Yates, born in New Zealand, gained Japanese nationality in 2015.

The police arrested his teammate Ryota Kabashima, 28, last week on suspicion of possessing about 1 gram of cocaine in his wallet.

“We sincerely apologize for the continued arrests of our team members. We deeply regret that we have caused trouble at a time when Japan will soon host the Rugby World Cup,” Toyota said in a statement.

Toyota has suspended the Top League team’s operations since Kabashima’s arrest.