• Kyodo News


Fuji Television Network Inc. plans to file a 38 billion yen damages suit against Livedoor Co. next week, sources said Friday.

Fuji TV, one of Japan’s largest private broadcasters, will claim it suffered losses in Livedoor shareholdings due to securities fraud on Livedoor’s part, the sources said.

The TV broadcaster had obtained Livedoor shares for 44 billion yen before selling them to Yasuhide Uno, president of cable broadcaster Usen Corp., for only 9.5 billion yen.

It is expected to seek the loss of 34.5 billion yen plus additional money as Livedoor had rejected Fuji TV’s requests for compensation, they said.

The broadcaster has said it incurred huge losses on sharp declines in Livedoor share prices after prosecutors raided the Net firm in January 2006. Livedoor was delisted by the Tokyo Stock Exchange in April the same year.

About 3,600 individual investors have already filed suits for a total of some 23 billion yen in damages and trust banks entrusted by investors with managing their stocks have also brought cases to court.

Given Fuji TV’s move, other institutional investors may follow suit.

The district court earlier found Livedoor group founder and former President Takafumi Horie and other former top executives guilty of profit-padding and stock market manipulation.

The court said they conspired to pad the group’s pretax balance by reporting about 5.3 billion yen in profit for the year through September 2004 when it should have stated a 300 million yen loss, by inappropriately posting profits of 3.7 billion yen from sales of its own stock and booking 1.6 billion yen in profits from false business transactions by two companies it planned to buy.

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