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Wednesday 13 December 2017

Swim champ expelled for games theft

Naoya Tomita during the men's 50m breaststroke event at the Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea (AP)
Naoya Tomita during the men's 50m breaststroke event at the Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea (AP)

Japan has expelled one of its top swimmers from the Asian Games after he was caught stealing a camera.

Naoya Tomita, 25, the 200-metre breaststroke gold medallist from the 2010 games, could face criminal charges over the theft of the camera, owned by a South Korean media organisation, team bosses said.

Surveillance cameras at the games in Incheon, South Korea, captured Tomita putting the camera in his bag on Thursday after watching his team-mates compete. Officials said he admitted taking the camera.

"I can't recall anything like this ever happening before with a Japanese athlete at the Asian Games," said Tsuyoshi Aoki, the head of Japan's delegation. "It is a violation of the most basic code of conduct."

"We offer our deep apologies."

Mr Aoki said Tomita would have to pay his own airfare home.

Tomita finished fourth in the 100-metre breaststroke and failed to win a medal at this year's games.

Press Association

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