Yamaha Music CEO with Ties to Moscow Elite Found Dead in Hotel

Jun Aoki, the 55-year-old CEO of Yamaha Music’s Russia operations, has been found dead in a Moscow hotel. Aoki’s body was discovered on Tuesday at the prestigious Radisson Collection Hotel Moscow, formerly known as the Hotel Ukraina.

According to Russian media reports, Aoki’s acquaintances had alerted the police after not hearing from him for several days. The preliminary cause of death has been listed as acute heart failure, though an investigation is still ongoing.

Aoki was not just the head of Yamaha’s Russian business; he also served on the board of trustees of the prestigious Moscow State Tchaikovsky Conservatory. This board is chaired by Viktor Zubkov, a close confidant of Russian President Vladimir Putin and the powerful chairman of energy giant Gazprom.

Aoki’s death is the latest in a series of suspicious executive deaths in Russia, particularly among high-ranking officials of the country’s second-largest oil producer, Lukoil. Barely a month ago, 53-year-old Vitaly Robertus, a vice president at the firm, was found dead.

Robertus was the fourth Lukoil executive to have died under mysterious circumstances since the start of the Russia-Ukraine war in 2022, with the company itself calling for a quick end to the conflict. 

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