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Gloria Macapagal Arroyo

Exclusive: Philippine payments give U.S. casino regulators new focus in Wynn-Okada feud

U.S. gaming regulators are investigating millions of dollars paid by affiliates of Japanese billionaire Kazuo Okada's Universal Entertainment Corp to a former consultant for the Philippine gaming authority around the time the company was lobbying to win concessions for a $2 billion Manila casino.A Universal subsidiary made a $5 million payment in May 2010 to Rodolfo Soriano, a close associate of the former head of the Philippine gaming regulator, according to a Reuters examination of bank records, corporate filings, court documents and records prepared by Universal staff. The payment was made via a shell company in Hong Kong and was part of $40 million in transfers made by Universal's U.S. affiliate Aruze USA that are now a focus for investigators.The document trail connecting Soriano to the $5 million payment has not been previously reported.It's not clear whether Okada, 70 and ranked 18th among Japan's wealthiest by Forbes, personally approved the payments. Universal, more than two-t...

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