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Hidetoshi Kiyotake officially files a lawsuit against Yomiuri

by on Dec.14, 2011 @ 3:05 am, under NPB

Former GM Hidetoshi Kiyotake filed a lawsuit against the Yomiuri Shimbun group, the Yomiuri Giants, and chairman Tsuneo Watanabe on Tuesday. Kiyotake claimed damages of about 62M yen -- 52.2M yen in lost wages (between 12/2011 until 6/2013) for wrongful termination by the Yomiuri Giants and a collective 10M yen from the Yomiuri Shimbun group, the Yomiuri Giants, and chairman Watanabe for defamation. Kiyotake is also asking for a written apology to be published in the Yomiuri Shimbun national morning paper.

The first round of oral proceedings are set to take place on 2/2/2012.

Nikkan Sports has posted the team of lawyers for each side.

Kiyotake's Lawyers

Name JPN Name Eng
吉峯  啓晴 Yoshimine, Hiroharu
吉峯  康博 Yoshimine, Yasuhiro
室伏  美佳 Murofushi, Mika
高橋  拓也 Takahashi, Takuya
大井 倫太郎 Oi, Rintaro
大河原 啓充 Okawara, Hiromitsu
中村  栄治 Nakamura, Eiji
朴   鐘賢 Park, Chon-Hyon
小暮  典子 Kogure, Noriko
田口  真衣 Noguchi, Mai

Yomiuri Lawyers

Name JPN Name Eng
喜田村 洋一 Kitamura, Yoichi
田中  克郎 Tanaka, Katsuro
升本  喜郎 Matsumoto, Yoshiro
高山  崇彦 Takayama, Takahiko
荻野  敦史 Ogino, Atsushi
宮下   央 Miyashita, Oh
稲垣  勝之 Inagaki, Katsuyuki
吉野  史紘 Yoshino, Fumihiro
金子  剛大 Kaneko, Takehiro
谷口  達哉 Taniguchi, Tatsuya

FWIW: The Giants scheduled Shuichi Murata's press conference at the same time as Kiyotake's.

UPDATE @ 9:43pm - The total on the lawsuit is actually around 75,790,940 -- 52.2M yen in lost wages, 10M yen in defamation, 13M yen in order to print the written apology, and 590,940 in other fees.  And ten TV cameras and about 50 reporters covered Kiyotake's press conference on Tuesday.

UPDATE @ 11:41pm - Sponichi is carrying the following comments from taken during Kiyotake's press conference:

What are your current thoughts, now that you have filed a lawsuit against your beloved Giants?

Kiyotake: I have no words.  My goal was to help strengthen the Giants.  But, I also think that protecting coaches ultimately means your also protect the players.  I did what I had to because I wanted to protect them.  It is unfortunate that things ended the way did, but since I risked my job, I also want them to understand.

What are you plans for witnesses?

Yoshimine (lawyer): Nothing has been decided yet.  We are not considering [Tatsunori] Hara.

What are other saying about what you are doing?

Kiyotake: The Giants' fans have told me that if I have come this far, they want me to do my best to get rid of the "grime."  A lot of those people would also like to see the Giants take better care of their lifers and strengthen the team through their farm system.

Why do you think chairman Watanabe took Kiyotake's coaching decisions so lightly?

Yoshimine (lawyer): That is something I would like to ask.  A person with common sense was doing something that went against common sense.  The fact that he did not find anything wrong with that is the root of the problem.  I think the Yomiuri readers must also be worried.

Sponichi also notes, in a separate article, that Kiyotake was hoping to see the Giants return to developing young talent.

"It is obviously important to bring in reinforcements," said Kiyotake. "I tried to find a balance between bringing in reinforcement and developing talent.  Why is there a Ni-gun and a secondary Ni-gun?  Why is it necessary to have 90 players?  Honestly, I do not want to see the team go back to the way they were when Watanabe-san insisted on having a great slugging team."