KATHMANDU, DEC 29 - Govinda Prasad Mainali, who was erroneously imprisoned in Japan for 15 years, has demanded 68 million yen in compensation from the Japanese authorities, The Japan Times reported on Saturday. The sum is equivalent to over Rs 69 million, the highest Mainali can claim as per Japan’s law.
Mainali’s family members in Kathmandu, however, declined to confirm the amount, saying that Mainali is in talks directly with lawyers in Japan. “We are in no position to comment on anything concerning the compensation amount,” said Bishnu Nisthuri, former president of the Federation of Nepali Journalists and one of Mainali’s relatives.
Radha, Mainali’s wife, too, refused to divulge the details. “We can’t say anything yet,” she told the Post over the phone. “If there are any developments in future, we will present ourselves to the media.” Mainali was not available for comments despite several attempts of the Post. Considering that his case is still under way in Tokyo High Court, Mainali has refrained from appearing in the media.
According to The Japan Times, under the criminal compensation law, a wrongfully imprisoned person is allowed to seek damages from the state and the sum is determined after the government considers factors such as the length of time served and the degree of mental distress caused. “The amount per day ranges from 1,000 to 12,500 yen,” reads the report. “Mainali is seeking 12,500 yen per day and may file another lawsuit for damages.”
Mainali was jailed for a 1997 rape and murder of a woman in Tokyo. After serving 15 years, a retrial last April revealed that the semen collected from the woman’s body did not match Mainali’s. He was deported to Nepal in June.
The Tokyo High Court on December 7 released its final verdict declaring Mainali innocent. Prosecutors who had been demanding Mainali’s imprisonment even after his deportation withdrew their case on October 29, saying, “Based on available evidence, the possibility of another person being the culprit [rapist and murderer] cannot be ruled out.”
Posted on: 2012-12-30 08:58