Japanese man fined RM 49,000 in TV star Hana Kimura suicide case

A man who tweeted insults against a Japanese reality TV star after his suicide was fined 1.29 million yen (RM 49,000) on May 19 after his comments raised concerns about cyberbullying.

The civil libel lawsuit was brought by the mother of Hana Kimura, a cast member of the Netflix show Terrace House, who committed suicide a year ago at age 22.

A lawyer representing the mother told AFP the court ordered the man – whose name has not been publicly disclosed – to pay the sum of money.

“I am truly grateful that the court recognized this to be an act of serious slander,” Kyoko Kimura told reporters after the proceedings, which the man did not attend.

“What I really had in mind was that I wanted the individual to face what he had done. There was absolutely no demonstration of that. And it was unfortunate.”

Japanese media reported that he tweeted into Hana Kimura’s account shortly after her death: “Everyone is happy because of your death. Thank you.”

“The show was canceled because of your suicide. Who do you think you are, causing trouble until the end? Go to hell,” he wrote.

The pink-haired professional wrestler was a fan favorite of the internationally acclaimed show in which six young people share a house while looking for love.

But she has been the target of a torrent of online abuse.

The show was canceled after his death, which also prompted Japanese ministers and lawmakers to tackle cyberbullying.

In March, another man was fined 9,000 yen for online abuse directed at Hana Kimura, without a trial.

He had sent messages saying, “You have such a terrible personality. Is your life worth living?” and “Hey, hey. When are you going to die?”

A third man was also reportedly fined for his cyberbullying. – AFP

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