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Tokuji Wakasa, bribery case figure

TOKYO -- Tokuji Wakasa, the former president of All Nippon Airways Co. who was convicted of graft in the Lockheed scandal, one of the country's biggest post-World War II bribery cases, died of pneumonia Tuesday at a Tokyo hospital. He was 91.

Mr. Wakasa, once dubbed ''don of the air industry" in Japan, joined ANA in 1969, after 31 years at the transport ministry, including as vice transport minister. He was promoted to company president in 1970, taking ANA from a domestic to international carrier and into the hotel business.

In 1976, Mr. Wakasa was prosecuted for accepting $1.39 million in bribes from Lockheed Corp. in return for the introduction of the US aircraft maker's passenger jets. In 1992, he was sentenced by the Supreme Court to three years in prison. He was pardoned in 1996.

Sixteen people, including former prime minister Kakuei Tanaka, were indicted in the scandal.

Despite the scandal, Mr. Wakasa continued to exert his influence at ANA as chairman and honorary chairman, helping it become Japan's second-biggest carrier.

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