Thursday, April 27, 2006

The Value of the Life of a Young Mother in Japan

The Yokohama district court decided that the car company, Mitsubishi, pay the family of a young woman killed by a tire that had fallen off of one of its trucks 5.5 million yen---about $45,000. It rejected punitive damages sought by the mother of the victim, because Japanese law does not allow punitive damages.

So, Mitsubishi, the company which lost a huge sexual and racial discrimination lawsuit in the US with much more serious consequences years ago---got off for nothing for killing a person. Mitsubishi knew of this defect---and had just recently been caught faking its data in order to hide flaws and defects in its vehicle from the government and public---but will pay less than the annual salary of an average white-collar worker in Tokyo. The government is serious about stopping these kinds of things. $45000 for a huge company is a serious deterrent.

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