High Court Confirms Defamation of Japanese Comedian Ota

Society Culture

Tokyo, Dec. 24 (Jiji Press)--Intellectual Property High Court upheld on Friday a lower court ruling ordering a magazine publisher to pay damages for defaming Japanese comedian Hikari Ota.

Ota, a member of the Bakusho Mondai comic duo, filed the damages lawsuit with Tokyo District Court against Shinchosha Publishing Co., saying its Shukan Shincho magazine's report in August 2018 that his father paid 8 million yen to Nihon University as a reward for his backdoor admission defamed him.

Last December, the district court ordered the publisher to pay 4.4 million yen in damages and delete the article in question from its website. Meanwhile, the court turned down Ota's request for the publication of an apology. Both sides appealed.

While rejecting the appeals, the high court supported the district court ruling on the grounds that Shinchosha's editorial staff failed to make sufficient effort for confirming facts and that there were no reasons to believe the published story was true, according to Presiding Judge Tamotsu Shoji.

In response to the high court ruling, Ota said he was satisfied.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

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