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Report: FBI To Investigate Olympus Acquisitions

Tokyo – Michael
Woodford, the recently ousted British CEO of digital camera and optical
technologies resource Olympus, reportedly is scheduled to meet with the  U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), as
the company’s chairman announced his resignation.

According to a

Street Journal report

on Wednesday, Woodford will meet with FBI
investigators in New York today following claims of suspicious acquisitions by
the Japanese camera maker that Woodford, reportedly refused to be a party to.

Tsuyoshi Kikukawa tendered his resignation less than two weeks after he took
control of the company from Woodford. Kikukawa cited the trouble the scandal
had caused investors, customers and partners.

Woodford said he
was fired by the company Oct. 14 after asking about the size of payments made
by Olympus for acquisitions made between 2006 and 2008.

According to
reports, Kikukawa will become a director without executive rights. He will be
replaced as president by Shuichi Takayama.

The company said
there were no illegalities concerning the uncharacteristically large purchases
of several companies or of a $700 million advisory fee payment that had
concerned Woodford.

Woodford was
allegedly fired after urging Kikukawa to resign over major governance issues
associated with the payments, according to an AFP report.

Company share prices
have tumbled more than 50 percent since the reports of the scandal surfaced,
causing investors to call for answers. Olympus said it would arrange a
third-party inquiry into the matter.