Monday, March 19, 2007


Outsider Horiemon gets 21/2 years in prison, an unusually harsh sentence in a country where crooked insiders get fined 5% of their graft; but the most remarkable statement in this article [emphasis mine] is that "Horie had repeatedly asserted his innocence during his intensely watched trial that began last September — a risky endeavor in a nation where 99 percent of criminal trials end in guilty verdicts, and a show of remorse can help win lenience."

Innocent until accused?


March 22 update: "Japan has been abuzz with the unusually harsh prison term handed to former Internet mogul Takafumi Horie -- and the slap on the wrist given to scandal-tainted brokerage Nikko Cordial in another high-profile case of accounting fraud that, in monetary terms, was some eight times greater than Horie's firm."

"'What's happening is unfair,' said Koetsu Aizawa, economics professor at Saitama University. 'Slamming the little guy who stands out while letting big names go is what's so despicable about Japan.'"


March 24 update: "In the past, executives charged with tampering with earnings reports, even at companies far bigger than Livedoor, had generally avoided prison terms and got suspended sentences." Livedoor slapped with largest-ever Japan corporate fine


Annette said...

The police would never arrest someone innocent, would they? That would be immoral and a waste of public sources. Amazing that they even bother to have a trial, when you come to think about it. Do they employ a jury in Japan?

Robert Brady said...

No. From 1 to 5 (appointed) judges preside, depending on the type of trial.

Todd said...

From one of my favorite blogs, an interesting opinion on juries and their introduction to Japan. Food for thought...

Robert Brady said...

When I think of juries I think of slick, high-paid lawyers (against public servants) and OJ; but then here, with only judges, a 99% conviction rate?? And if you plead guilty (even if you're innocent) and express remorse they go easy on you?