Former New Zealand sevens international arrested over cocaine in Japan

Japanese Top League club Toyota Verblitz has issued an apology after two of their players were arrested for possession of cocaine in just over a week, Kyodo News reported.

Former New Zealand sevens international Steven Yates was arrested at his home in Nagoya on Thursday and admitted to possession of a small amount of cocaine, the news agency reported.

Flyhalf Ryota Kabashima was arrested last week after cocaine was discovered in his wallet when he left it in a taxi in Toyota in April. He has denied the charge.

Toyota Verblitz, who have signed All Blacks captain Kieran Read for next year, suspended rugby operations after Kabashima's arrest and withdrew from the Top League Cup.

"It is extremely regrettable that an athlete in the world of fair play has been arrested for antisocial behaviour," the club said in a statement.

"We will continue to give our full cooperation to the police investigation and will deal with the club member strictly based on the status of the investigation."

The club, coached by former Springboks boss Jake White, finished fourth in the Top League last season.

Japan hosts the Rugby World Cup for the first time later this year.

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June 29, 2019

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