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Billionaire tycoon named Tokyo 2020 adviser

June 5, 2014

TOKYO (AP) — A Japanese billionaire convicted in a financial scandal a decade ago and former prime minister Taro Aso are among 170 people named to an advisory panel on the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Yoshiaki Tsutsumi, who was convicted of insider trading and falsifying financial statements in 2005, was appointed Thursday. The 80-year-old, once ranked the world’s richest man, will serve as a special adviser to the panel that will assist the organizing committee of the games.

Aso, who was prime minister of Japan for one year from September of 2008, was also named despite a history of making controversial statements. He once said the ideal country would be one that attracts “the richest Jewish people” and compared the opposition Democratic Party of Japan to the Nazis.

The advisory panel will be chaired by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

Other panel members include Sadako Ogata, former United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, and 2000 Olympic women’s marathon gold medalist Naoko Takahashi.

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