U.S. yet to pay taxi robbery redress

Kyodo, JIJI

The U.S. government has yet to pay compensation to a 71-year-old former taxi driver diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder after he was robbed by two U.S. Marines while driving a taxi in Okinawa in 2006, the man’s lawyer said Monday.

The lawyer, Tsutomu Arakaki, said such compensation is typically paid within a period of a year or a year and a half.

In July 2006, the marines robbed the driver of his wallet with ¥44,000 and some $320 after pulling him from his cab in the city of Okinawa. The man filed for damages in November 2008 and in April 2009, with the Defense Ministry serving as a point of contact for the U.S military, but the procedure has stalled on the U.S. side for unknown reasons, he said.

At a news conference in Naha, Arakaki said that his client “became incapable of driving and sustained a great deal of emotional distress.”

The Naha District Court ruled in 2009 that the United States pay about ¥28 million in damages. The same court sentenced the marines to two years and 10 months in prison the previous year.

The bilateral agreement also stipulates that if damages paid by the U.S. government fall short of the amount finalized by the court, the Japanese side can pay the balance.

On Aug. 14, the lawyer asked the Defense Ministry to pay the compensation if the United States continues to be unresponsive.

  • Why wouldn’t they pay?
    And why have no one commented here?
    Is it not so interested in, an injured Japanese old man’s life with foreigners?

    • akeleven

      We are so ashamed of the US and we don’t know what to do about it. Write congressmen, write the president? Falls on deaf ears. The military is a law unto itself.

      • Thank you for your sincere address.
        Anything you would do in your term is grateful with me and this man, your voice in US society might be louder than one a Japanese citizen has.
        You must be an American conscience I assume, rarely seen in this neighborhood.

      • akeleven

        I sent a letter to my 2 congressmen and 1 representative, as well as Obama. Hope that helps.

      • Appreciate your help, really glad, I’ve reported it to Ryukyushimpo news from their information form, since I couldn’t have found the lawyer’s web site, I asked them to tell your help to the attorney Arakaki.
        I’m surprised to get such a help from US citizen like you, through having some conflicts between other ones, sometimes I’ve been told many things uncomfortable, but you’ve cleared them out.
        USA will be an amazing place if only there were more poeple like you, hope there are.
        You’re a most great US citizen I’ve ever met, I believe this poor old man of Okinawa feels the same as me, wish you a healthy day to last.