Johnny Kitagawa sexual abuse scandal: Victims’ group criticizes Smile-Up

Members of a gaggle of males who say they have been sexually abused as boys by a Japanese leisure mogul are accusing the corporate behind the scandal, beforehand generally known as Johnny’s, of not being honest in coping with the victims.

Shimon Ishimaru, who represents the victims’ group, mentioned many haven’t but acquired compensation. The group has requested to satisfy with firm officers, however that has not occurred, he mentioned at a information convention with three different males who mentioned they have been victims.

Ishimaru is amongst hundreds of men who have come forward since final yr, alleging they have been sexually abused as teenagers by boy band producer Johnny Kitagawa. Kitagawa, who died in 2019, was by no means charged and remained highly effective within the leisure business.

The corporate lastly acknowledged Kitagawa’s long-rumored abuse final yr. The corporate’s chief made a public apology in Could. The Japanese authorities has additionally pushed for compensation.

The corporate, which has modified its title from Johnny & Associates to Smile-Up, mentioned Monday it has acquired requests for compensation from 939 folks. Of these, 125 have acquired compensation, it mentioned in a press release. The corporate has arrange a panel of three former judges to look into the claims.

“We are proceeding with those with whom we have reached an agreement on payments,” it mentioned, whereas promising to proceed with its efforts.

It didn’t instantly reply to a request for touch upon Monday’s information convention.

The victims’ group mentioned it has been approached by dozens of people that had been informed by the corporate that there was not sufficient proof to honor their claims. Particulars weren’t disclosed.

The corporate’s manufacturing enterprise, recognized beforehand as Johnny’s, has continued beneath a distinct title, Starto Leisure.

In line with multiple accounts, Kitagawa abused the boys in his Tokyo luxurious mansion, in addition to different locations, comparable to his automobile and abroad inns, whereas they have been performing as Johnny’s dancers and singers. The abuse continued for a number of a long time.

The repercussions of the scandal have unfold. In standup comedy, a number of girls have alleged sexual abuse by a well-known comedian. He has denied the allegations.

The U.N. Working Group on Business and Human Rights, which is investigating the Johnny’s abuse circumstances, is to difficulty a report in June, together with suggestions for change.

The Related Press doesn’t often establish individuals who say they have been sexually assaulted, however Kitagawa’s recent accusers have given their names. Critics say what occurred and the silence of Japan’s mainstream media are indicative of how the world’s third largest financial system lags in defending human rights.

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