LDP, CDP Agree to Modify Bill to Toughen Penalties for Insulting

Politics

Tokyo, May 14 (Jiji Press)--Japan's ruling Liberal Democratic Party and the main opposition Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan have agreed to modify a Penal Code amendment designed to toughen penalties for those committing the crime of defamation.

The CDP is now set to allow the bill to be put to a vote at a meeting Wednesday of the Judicial Affairs Committee of the House of Representatives, the lower chamber of the Diet, Japan's parliament.

The government submitted the revision bill to the current 2022 regular Diet session, which started in January, after professional wrestler Hana Kimura, 22, who faced online bullying, took her own life in 2020. Kimura's death attracted wide media and public attention.

The amendment calls for adding a jail term of up to one year with or without labor and fines of up to 300,000 yen as statutory penalties for the crime of defamation. At present, short-term detention and fines of less than 10,000 yen are the only statutory penalties for the crime.

The CDP argued that it is difficult for the crime of defamation, which covers cases where people are insulted in public, to deal with bullying using email and other methods that are not visible to third parties.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press