Hundreds of protests in Japan after father was acquitted of raping his minor daughter
Hundreds of people took to the streets all over Japan to protest recent acquittal by the court of alleged rapists, including a man who was not found guilty of raping his own daughter.
In March, a court in the central city of Nagoya, acquitted of the man raping his daughter, 19, despite years of sexual abuse.
The court acknowledged that the woman had sex with her father in August and September 2017 with her father, but ruled that she could have resisted if she wanted to.
Despite the acquittal, the court also acknowledges that the girl had sexually abused her father since the second year of high school, when she would have been 13 or 14 years old.
Protesters gather at the meeting called & # 39; Flower Demo & # 39; to criticize recent acquittals in court cases about alleged rape in Japan
With flowers and placards with slogans such as & # 39; # MeToo, # WithYou & # 39 ;, sexual abuse survivors shared their experiences during the rally
Prosecutors argued that repeated violence and threats against the daughter meant that she was unable to resist her father.
The defense, meanwhile, claimed that the sex was consensual because the daughter had not resisted.
The judge said: & # 39; Because of the many years of sexual abuse [and other abuse], she was mentally under her father's control. & # 39;
He later added, however, that the daughter was not fully under the control of her father.
The judge ruled: & # 39; Therefore, there is a reasonable doubt as to whether she was really unable to resist. & # 39;
The father could go free.
This case was one of many that triggered the protests in Sapporo, Sendai, Tokyo, Nagoya, Osaka, Kobe, Yamaguchi, Fukuoka and Kagoshima.
With flowers and placards with slogans such as & # 39; # MeToo, # WithYou & # 39 ;, survivors of sexual abuse told their experiences on Tuesday night.
They protested against various acquittals for rape, including a case in which a father was acquitted of raping his daughter
The father was acquitted of the rape, despite the fact that the court admitted that the sex was against the will of his daughter
They said they did this because they want to delete a rule that they say puts too heavy a burden on rape victims, discourages them from coming forward and hurts their legal chances if they do.
& # 39; If we & # 39; Keep saying no to sexual violence and making our voice heard, I hope this unreasonable law will certainly be changed, & # 39; Misa Iwata, who said she was raped at the age of 16, told a crowd of hundreds of people together near Tokyo Station.
& # 39; Lifting your voice is frightening & # 39 ;, Iwata, a member of the Spring Day Sexual Abuse Group, added. & # 39; But by raising our voice, society and politics will certainly change. & # 39;
Lawmakers revised Japanese age-old rape legislation in 2017 with tougher penalties and other changes.
However, the reforms left unsatisfactory controversial requirements for prosecutors to prove that violence or intimidation was involved or that the victim was "unable to resist".
Lawmakers revised Japanese age-old rape legislation in 2017 to introduce tougher penalties along with other changes – but protesters claim they didn't go far enough
There were protests in Sapporo, Sendai, Tokyo, Nagoya, Osaka, Kobe, Yamaguchi, Fukuoka and Kagoshima
Speaking of the case that the father is acquitted of raping his daughter, Miku Yokoyama, he said: & # 39; this kind of thing goes on because most people don't feel the judgments are wrong.
& # 39; We are here today to make a move to change that. & # 39;
The organizers started the monthly protests in April.
& # 39; The voices of those who say & # 39; We cannot remain silent & # 39; spread & # 39 ;, the author and activist Minori Kitahara quoted the crowd in Fukuoka, where a non-guilty verdict was pronounced in March.
Other court rulings on which the protesters have protested include a case in which a man accused of raping a woman after she died was found not guilty on March 12.
His acquittal was made on the grounds that he & # 39; misunderstood & # 39; had that she had agreed to have sex with him.
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