[sumo] Lawsuit Story

Jeff Anderson jeffand at regent.edu
Wed Apr 4 15:33:56 EDT 2007

>From today's Japan times
Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Sumo group files suit over bout-fixing allegations
Kyodo News

The Japan Sumo Association and its chairman, Kitanoumi, filed a lawsuit in
the Tokyo District Court on Tuesday against magazine publisher Kodansha Ltd.
for 110 million yen in damages and the publication of an apology for
articles that allege bout-fixing.

The suit was filed against Kodansha, publisher of the weekly Shukan Gendai,
which carried the articles, and others in the second lawsuit filed by the
association over the reports.

The JSA and 17 wrestlers, including Mongolian-born grand champion Asashoryu,
filed a lawsuit with the same court Feb. 23 against Kodansha, two of its
officials and Yorimasa Takeda, who wrote the articles, seeking 480 million
yen in damages.

The new suit claims that Shukan Gendai misled readers by printing articles
that allege the championship match on the final day of the 1975 Spring Grand
Sumo Tournament between yokozuna Kitanoumi and the late ozeki Takanohana was
fixed. Takanohana, who became stable master Futagoyama after he retired, won
the tournament.

The articles also claim that JSA stable masters traded their wrestlers'
performances for money, and the lawsuit says these allegations damaged the
plaintiffs' honor and social standing.

Keiji Isaji, a lawyer for the sumo association, said the allegations about
Kitanoumi and Takanohana are libelous.

Isaji met Tuesday with sumo wrestlers not involved in the first lawsuit to
prepare for a possible third suit over the articles.

The Shukan Gendai's editorial division said it would not comment on the
group's lawsuit.

In the first suit, the plaintiffs are arguing the magazine defamed the
plaintiffs by alleging that Asashoryu habitually pays opponents to lose and
that other wrestlers engage in fixing bouts upon request.

Best regards,
Jeffrey Anderson
For of all sad words of tongue or pen,
The saddest are these:
It might have been. - John Greenleaf Whittier

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