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Ex-porn star wins 1.7 million yen for infringement of privacy by gossip magazines

Tokyo- A former porn actress has won compensation from a major publishing house after two of its weekly magazines reported on her private life after she retired.

The Tokyo District Court has ordered Tokyo-based Shogakukan Inc. to pay 1.7 million yen in damages to Kaoru Kuroki, who retired in 1994. She had demanded 22 million yen.

“The sensational articles that revealed the private life of the plaintiff, who now lives as an ordinary citizen, are illegal,” Presiding Judge Izumi Takizawa said as he handed down the ruling.

Kuroki’s lawyer said the publisher should have gained approval from his client for publishing the articles. “It can’t be said all stories of this kind are illegal, but the publisher should have gained her consent,” lawyer Wataru Akiyama said.

Shogakukan said it is considering appealing to a higher court. “It’s regrettable that our claim was dismissed. We’ll consider how to respond to the ruling after closely reviewing it,” an official of its public relations division said.

The articles that were deemed illegal were run in an issue of Josei Seven in January 2002 and a Shukan Post issue in January 2004. The stories reported on her post-retirement private life, complete with photos taken secretly.

In court hearings, the defendant justified its decision. “The recent private life of the plaintiff, who led a unique life as an entertainer, is a matter of social concern.”

However, the judge dismissed the claim, saying, “The defendant’s revelations of her privacy are unjustifiable.” The court also deemed that the publication of the photos was also illegal.

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