The verdict sounds like a medieval witch-hunt trial!
The defendant’s cries echoed in the courtroom.
The sentencing hearing was held on December 14 at the Osaka District Court. Judge Jun Oyori sentenced Junya Okuno, 36, a former university employee, to two years in prison, suspended for four years, on charges of obstruction of business and injury for refusing to wear a mask on board Peach Aviation, a low-cost airline, and causing an emergency landing after a dispute with the flight crew. After the verdict, Okuno was clearly dissatisfied and exclaimed, “Witch hunt. After leaving the courtroom, he continued to complain to the press gathered at the Osaka District Court as follows: “The court is the last bastion of human rights.
I have been fighting for a year, hoping that the court, as the last bastion of human rights and common sense, would make a just decision. However, I believe that today’s decision was nothing more than an essay. I am very disappointed. （In an effort to cast a stone on the (mask-wearing) issue, I said, ‘This is a medieval witch-hunt trial.'”
Okuno stubbornly appealed the legitimacy of the “no mask” policy. Friday Digital” detailed the incident in an article distributed on October 28. The following is a reintroduction of the article (some parts have been corrected).
The incident occurred in September 2008. The incident occurred on a flight from Kushiro Airport in Hokkaido to Kansai International Airport in Osaka.
The flight crew repeatedly asked Okuno to wear a mask, but he stubbornly refused. When a nearby passenger said, ‘I feel sick,’ Okuno became even more agitated. He became even more agitated when a nearby passenger said, ‘That’s insulting! Apologize! He grabbed the arm of a crew member who tried to calm him down and injured him.
The captain decided that the safety of the passengers could not be ensured, and made an emergency landing at Niigata Airport en route. Okuno was dropped off at Niigata Airport, but the flight was delayed for an hour and a half, affecting more than 100 passengers. More than 100 passengers were affected. Perhaps not satisfied with the situation, Okuno called himself “Mask-Refusing Uncle” after the incident, and refuted the incident on his blog and other media, calling it an “irrational coercion of masks” and other such comments.
(A reporter from the national newspaper’s social affairs department) Videos taken by passengers were immediately uploaded to the Internet. The video shows Okuno getting off the plane and the passengers applauding.
Okuno is a brilliant man who graduated from the University of Tokyo and went on to graduate school at the same university. At the time of the incident, he was working at Meiji Gakuin University. However, due to a problem on the plane, Meiji Gakuin University terminated its contract with Okuno. He was arrested in January 2009.
The Peach Aviation incident was not the only incident in which Okuno was involved; in April 2009, he was caught red-handed for obstruction of public business. He tried to enter a restaurant in Tateyama City, Chiba Prefecture, without wearing a mask, was refused entry, and got into an argument with the staff.
At his first trial in May 2010, Okuno said, “Is it really right to avoid and exclude someone just because they are not wearing a mask?
I am not guilty. I am very proud that I did not wear a mask on the plane. I have nothing to be ashamed of.
Even after his conviction, Okuno continued to speak out in front of the press, calling the verdict “a ‘house on the sand'” and the sentence “without logic or sincerity.
Photographed by： Shinji Hasuo