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TEPCO’s former management forced to indict former management.

Just a travesty of justice: The designated attorney requested an on-site inspection at the appeal hearing, but the trial concluded today without such an inspection.

June 6, 2022
The appeal trial for the mandatory prosecution of three former TEPCO executives over the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, in which they were acquitted at the first trial, concluded today without an on-site inspection.

Former TEPCO Chairman Tsunehisa Katsumata and three other former TEPCO executives were indicted on charges of manslaughter in connection with the nuclear accident.

The first trial court acquitted them in 2019 on the grounds that “it is not recognized that they could have predicted the occurrence of a huge tsunami,” and the designated lawyer acting as the prosecutor appealed the verdict.

At the appeal hearing held today at the Tokyo High Court, the designated lawyer pointed out that “the three could and should have foreseen the tsunami,” based on the “long-term assessment” issued by the government’s earthquake headquarters before the disaster. He argued that the first trial court’s decision to deny the reliability of the long-term assessment was erroneous.

The defense, on the other hand, argued for acquittal on the grounds that “there was no error in the first trial.

The designated attorney requested an on-site inspection at the appeal hearing, but the trial concluded today without such an inspection.
https://newsdig.tbs.co.jp/articles/-/63459?display=1

June 8, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , | 1 Comment

Three former TEPCO executives to be sentenced on appeal in December-January, or forced prosecution for nuclear accident.

Ichiro Takekuro (left), former vice president of TEPCO, enters the Tokyo High Court for the appeal trial of three former TEPCO executives who were indicted over the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.

June 6, 2022
On June 6, the Tokyo High Court (presided over by Keisuke Hosoda) held the third hearing of an appeal against three former TEPCO executives who were indicted on charges of manslaughter and death for negligence in connection with the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident and failure to take tsunami countermeasures. The designated attorney acting as the prosecutor requested that the Tokyo District Court ruling acquitting the three be reversed, and the defense reiterated its plea of not guilty at the conclusion of the trial. The verdict is expected in December or January next year.

 The three defendants are Tsunehisa Katsumata, 82, former chairman; Ichiro Takekuro, 76, former vice president; and Sakae Mutoh, 71, former vice president. The main point of contention, as in the first trial, is whether the three defendants were able to foresee the occurrence of the giant tsunami and whether they were able to take measures to prevent the accident.
Designated Lawyer: “The First-Instance Judgment is Wrong

 The district court ruling in 2007 rejected the reliability of the “long-term evaluation” of earthquake forecasts released by the government in 2002, and ruled that the earthquake was not foreseeable enough to shut down the plant.

 On the day of the hearing, the designated attorney appealed that the first instance decision was erroneous, citing the example of the reliability of the long-term assessment being recognized in a civil court ruling on liability for the accident. He stated, “If reliability is recognized, the validity of the first instance judgment will be overturned from the bottom up.”

 The defense, on the other hand, countered that the fact-finding process in a criminal trial is different from that in a civil trial, and that “this is no basis for holding that the first-instance decision was erroneous.

 According to the representatives of the families of the victims in the criminal trial, the high court explained after the conclusion of the trial that it would set the date for the verdict in December or January of next year.
https://www.asahi.com/articles/ASQ666G1BQ66UTIL01Z.html?fbclid=IwAR2xTS7IOPmNLwpMZsg1IPg8jscudVShWhxI-2n1YH2o2dQA2qi5h-kX2Ck

June 8, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , | Leave a comment

Appeal Hearings End for 3 Ex-TEPCO Execs over 2011 Meltdowns

June 6, 2022

Tokyo, June 6 (Jiji Press)–Tokyo High Court concluded on Monday hearings for three former executives of Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. <9501> in an appeal trial over the 2011 meltdowns at its Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant.

The three are former Chairman Tsunehisa Katsumata, 82, and former executive vice presidents Sakae Muto, 71, and Ichiro Takekuro, 76. The court is likely to issue its verdict in December or the following month, according to an attorney in the trial.

The trio came under mandatory indictment on charges of professional negligence resulting in death and injury over the unprecedented triple meltdown at TEPCO’s Fukushima No. 1 plant in northeastern Japan and were acquitted in the first trial.

In the first trial, hearings were held 37 times, while only three hearings took place for the appeal, including the first one in November last year.

Lawyers appointed to act as prosecutors had asked judges to conduct on-site inspections and demanded former senior officials of the Japan Meteorological Agency testify about the government’s long-term assessments of earthquake and tsunami risks.

https://www.nippon.com/en/news/yjj2022060600620/appeal-hearings-end-for-3-ex-tepco-execs-over-2011-meltdowns.html

June 8, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , | Leave a comment

Tokyo High Court rejects some of the evidence used in the second appeal against the former management of TEPCO

Feb. 9, 2022

A trial to hold the former management of Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) criminally liable. In the second appeal hearing, the court rejected the witness examination and on-site inspection at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant that the designated lawyer acting as the prosecutor had requested.

Tsunehisa Katsumata, former chairman of TEPCO, who was the top management of TEPCO at the time of the nuclear accident, and three other members of the former management team, were charged with manslaughter and forced to stand trial for allegedly failing to take countermeasures against the tsunami at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant and causing the death of a patient at a nearby hospital due to evacuation.

The Tokyo District Court in the first trial acquitted them, saying that they could not have foreseen the tsunami, and the designated lawyer acting as the prosecutor appealed.

In the first trial of the appeal held last November, the court’s decision was closely watched, as the court demanded the adoption of documents and witness interviews of experts to support the reliability of the government’s earthquake assessment.

Ms. Riko Muto, head of the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant Appeal Team, said, “I trust the conscience of the court to find out why the nuclear accident occurred, why it could not have been prevented, and who is responsible for this.

The second trial was held on the 9th. The presiding judge of the Tokyo High Court, Keisuke Hosoda, adopted as evidence the documents submitted by the designated lawyer acting as the prosecutor.

On the other hand, he dismissed as “unnecessary” the questioning of three witnesses, including experts involved in the formulation of the government’s earthquake assessment, and refused to conduct on-site inspections at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant and other facilities.

Hiroyuki Kawai, lawyer for the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant Lawsuit Group: “I feel disappointed. I didn’t see the slightest sign of a desire to determine the responsibility of the defendants for causing the biggest pollution incident in Japan’s history.

https://www.fnn.jp/articles/-/312956?fbclid=IwAR3apfFAsoUgzewfK2kYfie_15QZKU1JKbKOROrVUdGaJcmSBkmkR93p_kw

February 10, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , | Leave a comment

Criminal case of the three TEPCO former executives in appeal

A trial in which three former executives of Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) were forcibly prosecuted by a resolution of the Public Prosecutors Examination Council for failing to prevent the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.


This is a detailed record of the second trial.

The second trial of TEPCO’s forced prosecution began, with the former management once again claiming innocence.

The second trial of the three former executives of Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), who were forcibly prosecuted over the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant and acquitted in the first trial, began, with the former executives once again claiming their innocence.

Tsunehisa Katsumata, 81, former chairman of TEPCO, Ichiro Takekuro, 75, former vice president of TEPCO, and Sakae Mutoh, 71, former vice president of TEPCO, were indicted for involuntary manslaughter by a resolution of the Public Prosecutors Examination Council for causing the deaths of 44 people, including hospitalized patients in Fukushima Prefecture, during the evacuation process from the nuclear power plant accident.

The Tokyo District Court in the first trial acquitted all three defendants in September 2019, saying that there was no way they could have foreseen the huge tsunami.

The second trial began at the Tokyo High Court on April 2, 2021, and the designated lawyer stated that the first trial decision was wrong because it forcibly denied the reliability of the “long-term assessment,” which is the basic premise of the national government’s view on tsunamis, and argued that the three had a duty to build a seawall and take measures to prevent flooding of buildings.

On the other hand, the lawyer for the former management team reiterated their not guilty plea, saying, “The measures to prevent a huge tsunami were massive and took a long time, and even if they had started before the nuclear accident, they would not have been ready in time.

The next hearing will be held in February 2022, and it will be decided whether or not the judge will conduct an on-site inspection of the plant, as requested by the designated lawyer.
A representative of the victims and their families said, “The focus is on whether the court will conduct an on-site inspection of the plant.

Yuichi Kaito, a lawyer who represented the victims and their families at the hearing, held a press conference and said, “The biggest focus of the second trial is whether the court will conduct an on-site inspection of the plant. Although the court did not make a decision today, I hope that this is an indication of the court’s attitude that it wants to carefully consider the issue. If they do, I think it will increase the possibility that the not guilty verdict of the first trial will be reviewed.


Survivors: “Not guilty is impossible

The father of Hisao Sato, 62, of Fukushima Prefecture, was unable to evacuate from Futaba Hospital in Okuma Town, where he had been hospitalized, after the nuclear accident, and remained there with medical staff and died three days later.

Regarding the fact that the three former executives of TEPCO have once again claimed their innocence, Mr. Sato said, “I couldn’t go and pick up the people who were left behind even if I wanted to because the nuclear power plant exploded. There were tears around the eyes of his father, and I believe he suffered and died. Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) is absolutely responsible, and there is no way they are innocent.
https://www3.nhk.or.jp/news/special/toudensaiban/?fbclid=IwAR19G_iZOeA8x_1s-x6bDhzeGxz3jsDC-Y90iDjpB0zPEoaIT8QCPahEP-0

February 9, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , | Leave a comment

Criminal trial of Fukushima nuclear power plant to reach climax at high court on Feb. 9; adoption or rejection of on-site inspection and other measures key

Feb. 7, 2022
The trial to hold former executives of Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) criminally responsible for the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant is reaching a climax in the appeals court. The second trial, to be held at the Tokyo High Court on February 9 at 2:00 p.m., is expected to determine the future course of the trial, according to the designated lawyer acting as the prosecutor and a criminal litigation support group. The reason is that the presiding judge, Keisuke Hosoda, will decide whether to accept or reject (1) the on-site inspection at the nuclear power plant site and (2) the examination of three experts.

The court’s decision was based on the “common sense of citizens” that “it is only natural that a ‘high degree of caution’ should be imposed on the managers of nuclear power plants. (Photo: Masakazu Honda) In front of the Tokyo High Court on January 21, an “explanatory banner” was created based on the “common sense of citizens. (Photo by Masakazu Honda)

Since mid-January, a group of residents who have sued and accused TEPCO executives, criminal lawsuit supporters, and lawyers have held a series of press conferences and meetings to explain the current status of the trial, and on January 21, they submitted a list of signatures in front of the Tokyo High Court demanding a fair trial.

 There are about 30 class-action lawsuits across the country seeking damages from TEPCO and the government as civil liability for the Fukushima nuclear accident, with more than 12,000 plaintiffs in total. The total number of plaintiffs is over 12,000. Including individual lawsuits, there are more than 400 cases, but this is the only case in which criminal liability has been sought.

 In June 2012, the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant Complaint Group filed a complaint against TEPCO executives and government officials. In June 2012, a group of Fukushima nuclear power plant complainants filed a complaint against TEPCO executives and government officials, and prosecutors repeatedly dropped the case. After the prosecutors’ panel twice voted that the case was worth prosecuting, former TEPCO chairman Tsunehisa Katsumata and former vice presidents Ichiro Takekuro and Sakae Mutoh were indicted for manslaughter, and their trial has been ongoing since June 2005. The prosecution alleged that the defendants failed to take protective measures and shut down the reactors when they could have foreseen the possibility of flooding of the buildings, loss of power supply, and explosion due to a tsunami exceeding 10 meters in height, which is the height of the site of the plant.

 The Tokyo District Court (presiding Judge Kenichi Nagabuchi) acquitted all three defendants in September 2007, but Yuichi Kaito, a lawyer with the Criminal Litigation Support Lawyers Association, and others pointed out the “biggest and most fundamental error” in the original verdict. The lawyers for the criminal case, including Yuichi Kaido, claimed that the “biggest and most fundamental error” in the original ruling was that the government’s Headquarters for Earthquake Research Promotion (SUIBON) stated that “there was no foreseeable possibility of a tsunami exceeding 10 meters” without properly judging the reliability of the “long-term assessment” released in July 2002. In response to the long-term assessment, which predicted that a tsunami earthquake of magnitude 8.2 could occur anywhere along the Japan Trench from off the coast of Sanriku to off the coast of Boso, the court only ruled whether the plant should be shut down, and did not examine the “foreseeability appropriate for imposing the obligation to avoid the consequences of building seawalls and making facilities watertight. The report criticizes the government for not examining the “foreseeability that is appropriate for imposing the obligation to avoid the consequences of building seawalls and making facilities watertight.

The designated attorneys reiterated the necessity of on-site inspections in the appeals court. It is obvious at the site that the facilities of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant were built on the ground where a high quay was dug into the sea, and it is easy to understand where a tsunami barrier should have been installed and where watertight construction should have been carried out. It should be.

 Three witnesses have been called: Atsuo Watanabe, a former nuclear power plant design engineer at Toshiba Corporation, to provide additional evidence on the specifics of the measures taken to avoid the consequences of submerging the facility and their feasibility; Nobuo Hamada, a former director of the Earthquake and Volcano Division at the Japan Meteorological Agency, and Kunihiko Shimazaki, chairman of the Long-Term Assessment Department at SUIMOTO, to prove the reliability of the long-term assessment.

 Takashi Soeda, a science journalist, said, “There are many things that would have been buried in the dark without the criminal trial. (1) Based on surveys of past tsunami deposits, it was possible to predict a tsunami as large as the 869 Teikan earthquake, and Tohoku Electric Power Co. and other companies besides TEPCO had been working on tsunami countermeasures. (2) TEPCO and its employees agreed that a 15.7-meter tsunami was inevitable, but senior management prioritized avoiding management risk over avoiding accident risk and delayed tsunami countermeasures (3) In order to delay countermeasures, Sakae Muto asked the Japan Society of Civil Engineers (3) Mr. Sakae Muto had instructed the Japan Society of Civil Engineers to delay the countermeasures by stalling for time and laying the groundwork for experts to discuss the matter.

 One of the victims, Ruiko Muto, a resident of Tamura City, Fukushima Prefecture, said, “If the district court’s decision is confirmed as it is, it would be extremely unjust. Ten years have passed since the accident, and in Fukushima there is no justice at all. We must not leave this kind of society to future generations. I hope the court will show justice.
http://www.kinyobi.co.jp/kinyobinews/2022/02/07/antena-1067/?fbclid=IwAR1x4Hq2ILZ432ZlOn6MVRjkDvOKbjq7QFw9PGIB48Jcg6PlB8X_wTHfyGA

February 9, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , | Leave a comment

Signatures submitted to Tokyo High Court for site inspection, totaling 10,195

Jan. 21, 2022

On the morning of January 21, in the cold wind, the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant Criminal Litigation Support Group submitted the third round of signatures to the Tokyo High Court to demand that the presiding judge of the 10th Criminal Division of the Tokyo High Court, Keisuke Hosoda, decide on the on-site inspection and examination of witnesses.

 In the criminal trial of the three former TEPCO executives who were forcibly indicted, the appeal trial at the Tokyo High Court started in November last year, and the key is to realize the on-site verification by the judges who were not employed in the first trial.

 At the second trial on February 9 at 2:00 p.m., the decision on whether or not to hold the on-site inspection and witness examination will be made, and this will be a major turning point in the appeal trial.

 At 10:30 a.m. on the morning of the 21st, more than 100 citizens gathered in front of the Tokyo High Court, despite the bitter cold, and the leader of the support group and lawyers representing the victims, Kaito and Okawa, appealed to the Tokyo High Court to conduct on-site inspection and questioning of witnesses.

 A little after 11:00 a.m., the leader of the support group and other representatives of the group, including attorneys Kaito and Okawa, submitted their signatures to the Criminal Division 10 of the Tokyo High Court. A total of 10,195 signatures were submitted so far, including 2,151 for the third round.

 While taking measures against coronary infection, the participants once again confirmed that they would rally for the second trial on February 9 at 2:00 p.m., aiming for victory in the appeal trial of the Fukushima nuclear power plant criminal trial to hold TEPCO responsible for the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant accident.

https://skazuyoshi.exblog.jp/29816568/?fbclid=IwAR1eoQIEW3YpTVXKb40E1jjCU5WTc0jdY68se5UGvBVorywP8UEFMxB5ro0

January 24, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , | Leave a comment

Japan gov’t, TEPCO ordered to pay $2.63 mil. over Fukushima nuclear crisis

Plaintiffs’ lawyers hold banners in front of the Tokyo High Court on Feb. 19, 2021, that say they have won a damages suit against the government and Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. over the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident.

February 19, 2021

TOKYO (Kyodo) — A Japanese high court on Friday overturned a lower court decision that dismissed the state’s responsibility in the 2011 nuclear crisis, ordering both the government and the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant’s operator to pay damages to 43 people who had to evacuate from their hometowns as a result.

The Tokyo High Court ordered the state to cover the total damages of 278 million yen ($2.63 million) together with Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc., following the precedent set by the Sendai High Court last September.

It marked the third high court ruling among 30 similar lawsuits filed across the country, and the second in which both the state and the utility were ordered to pay damages over radioactive contamination following the meltdowns at the plant.

Presiding Judge Yukio Shiraishi said it was “extremely unreasonable” for the government not to use its regulatory power to force the operator widely known as TEPCO to take preventive measures against the tsunami that triggered the world’s worst nuclear accident since the 1986 Chernobyl disaster.

If it had done so, “the impact of the tsunami would have been significantly reduced, and the facility would not have lost all power,” he said.

The court also ruled that the evacuees should be compensated for their mental distress, in addition to the 100,000 yen per month to be awarded to them as consolation for prolonged evacuation.

In a lawsuit filed with the Chiba District Court, 45 people collectively sought around 2.8 billion yen in damages from the government and the plant operator after they were forced to move from Fukushima Prefecture to Chiba Prefecture, near Tokyo.

In 2017, the district court told TEPCO to pay a total of 376 million yen to 42 of the evacuees, but cleared the state of liability, prompting the plaintiffs to appeal the decision.

The focal point of the lower court case was whether the government and utility were able to foresee the huge tsunami that hit the coastal plant on March 11, 2011, and take preventive measures beforehand based on the government’s long-term earthquake assessment that was made public in 2002.

The Chiba court ruled that both the state and TEPCO could have predicted the tsunami, but the accident may have been unavoidable even if preventive steps had been taken.

In contrast with Friday’s ruling, the district court ruled the government’s failure to exercise regulatory power to force TEPCO to take preventive measures was “not unreasonable.”

In January, the Tokyo High Court also deemed the government was not responsible for the nuclear disaster in a suit filed by plaintiffs who evacuated to Gunma Prefecture, eastern Japan, and elsewhere. https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20210219/p2g/00m/0dm/001000d

February 21, 2021 Posted by | Fukushima 2021 | , , , | Leave a comment