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TEPCO sued for having Fukushima residents' "homeland stolen"

November 15, 2012


41 Fukushima residents demand 20 million yen each from TEPCO for 'theft of homeland'



Forty-one people from areas within 30 kilometers of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant will jointly sue the Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) for around 1.08 billion yen on Dec. 3, it was revealed by their lawyers on Nov. 14.

According to the lawyers, the plaintiffs will seek 20 million yen per person as compensation for having their "homeland stolen and integrity as a human being destroyed," when they bring their suit to the Iwaki branch of the Fukushima District Court.

The amount was determined through comparison with a ruling in a previous case involving the forced quarantine of leprosy patients. It also factored in 500,000 yen per person for emotional damage, and around 16 million yen per person for real-estate damage. Money will also be sought for lost profits from the inability to farm or work, and for living expenses during life as evacuees. The 41 plaintiffs have abandoned any idea of returning to their homes near the plant, the lawyers say.

The plaintiffs have already sought compensation from TEPCO four times, but have alone received small amounts in line with the company's compensation policies, the lawyers say.

Naoko Kanai, 48, who evacuated with her family and now is a leader for the plaintiff group, says, "Going to court was the only option to stop more people from suffering."

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