Court orders ex-classmates to pay Y38.5 mil for bullying-induced suicide in Shiga
Japan Today -- Feb 20
A Japanese court on Tuesday ordered two former classmates of a junior high school student -- who killed himself in 2011 -- to pay damages totaling about 37.5 million yen, acknowledging that their bullying led to his death.

The focal point of the trial at the Otsu District Court was whether they had bullied the 13-year-old boy, and if there was a causal link between bullying and his death.

The bereaved family had claimed the boy was driven to death by bullying and sought a total of 38.5 million yen from three former classmates and their parents.

However, the court denied the third former classmate was liable to pay compensation, citing his lack of involvement. As for the defendants' parents, it found no breach of supervisory duties.

"The assault by the two former classmates had escalated and as the student's relations with friends collapsed...he felt a strong sense of isolation and started to think he wanted to die," Presiding Judge Shigeyasu Nishioka said in handing down the ruling.

During the hearing, the family argued there had been "harsh bullying," with the former classmates forcing the boy to eat a dead bee and constantly telling him to die.

The defendants admitted some actions they were accused of by the family, but claimed they had thought they were just playing together.

News sources: Japan Today, ANNnewsCH
May 22
Tokyo DisneySea has begun its largest expansion project ever. (NHK)
May 21
The Cultural Affairs Agency on Monday announced 16 additions to its Japan Heritage list of tangible and intangible cultural properties that have been preserved based on unique regional histories and traditions, including narratives. (Japan Times)
May 21
Japanese Emperor Naruhito transplanted rice seedlings in a paddy at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo on Monday. (NHK)
May 21
A 24-year-old man was arrested Monday on suspicion of threatening to kill a member of a sister group of the popular girl band AKB48, police said. (Japan Today)
May 21
A Japanese lawmaker said Monday he will not resign as a Diet member after opposition parties submitted a joint motion urging him to quit for alluding to Japan waging war with Russia to regain control of a group of disputed islands. (Japan Today)
May 20
Officials of Japan's southwestern island town of Yakushima say all the people stranded on a mountain have descended by Sunday evening. (NHK)
May 20
Japanese seismologists believe that nearly 99 percent of their predictions related to massive earthquakes in the Pacific off central and western Japan are likely to prove wrong, a survey conducted by Kansai University showed Sunday. (Kyodo)
May 20
In recent years, we've heard a number of disturbing accounts involving teachers hitting students at Japanese schools, and this week, another disturbing case came to light, when a foreign English-language instructor was seen slapping a two-year-old child during a class at a child daycare facility. (Japan Today)
May 20
Police in Hidaka town, Hokkaido, have arrested a 29-year-old man on suspicion of attempted murder after he shot his father with an arrow from a crossbow. (Japan Today)
May 20
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and U.S. President Donald Trump are expected to sign an agreement on joint lunar exploration and other space-related projects when they meet here May 27, seeking to stay a step ahead of China and other rivals. (Nikkei)