• Kyodo


The Tokyo High Court on Tuesday ruled against 71 former Japan Airlines Co. cabin attendants who were seeking reinstatement after being dismissed as part of the airline’s corporate restructuring in the wake of its 2010 bankruptcy.

The court ruled “the personnel cuts were necessary for the company’s continued existence,” upholding a lower court decision.

Presiding Judge Takashi Otake noted the company made efforts to avoid dismissals, such as soliciting voluntary retirements, and said its criteria for dismissal, such as age, were reasonable.

The former cabin attendants, aged between 36 and 62, argued they were let go despite JAL having already reached its target for personnel cuts. But the court said the accuracy of data supporting that claim was questionable.

Taeko Uchida, who represented the plaintiffs, called the decision “absurd and unjust,” and said they would take the case to the Supreme Court.

The court is set to rule Thursday on a similar claim by 70 former JAL pilots appealing against a lower court decision.

JAL filed for bankruptcy protection in January 2010 and cut 165 cabin attendants and pilots in December the same year as part of its restructuring efforts.

Following a large government bailout, the company returned to the First Section of the Tokyo Stock Exchange in September 2012.

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