Sunday, October 18, 2009

Greenpeace launches Legal Appeal for Sato Junichi & Suzuki Toru--the "Tokyo Two" Anti-Whaling Activists

Joining people around the world wishing success for the Greenpeace legal appeal filed on Oct. 5 on behalf of Greenpeace Japan activists Junichi Sato and Toru Suzuki:
Greenpeace is taking whaling all the way to Japan's Supreme Court today, following a decision by the Sendai High Court to reject an appeal for the disclosure of key evidence in the trial of activists Junichi Sato and Toru Suzuki:

The first appeal was rejected on the 28th of September, prompting the new special appeal to the Supreme Court. This appeal asserts that if the prosecutor does not disclose this evidence it is in violation of Article 37(2) of the Japanese Constitution, as well as Article 14(3)(b) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which guarantee the right to a fair trial.

Sato and Suzuki, known as the Tokyo Two, are on trial for intercepting a box of whale meat as part of an investigation into an embezzlement ring within Japan's so-called "research" whaling programme. However, what should have been a fair trial is being frustrated at every stage by the withholding of f evidence that could further prove the embezzlement and by extension Sato and Suzuki's innocence.

"The Democratic Party of Japan's landslide election shows that people have had enough of rampant bureaucracy and the corruption it is infamous for," said Jun Hoshikawa, Executive Director of Greenpeace Japan. "The DPJ has promised to eliminate corruption and the waste of taxpayer money, increase government transparency and adhere to international human rights standards.

"By focusing its efforts on the whaling industry and ensuring the Tokyo Two receive a fair trial, the new government can demonstrate to the Japanese public and the international community that it is committed to its election promises..."

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