• Bloomberg


Google Inc. is seeing to reverse a Saitama court decision ordering it to remove links to Web articles about a man convicted of paying a 16-year-old girl for sex three years ago.

Google filed the appeal with the Saitama District Court on Thursday, according to Google spokesman Taj Meadows.

The court has ordered the Internet company to remove search results featuring online news on a man convicted of paying for sex with an underage girl, Meadows said.

Susumu Michida, a spokesman at the Saitama District Court, declined comment.

The case adds to lawsuits the world’s largest search engine operator faces globally from individuals and businesses accusing it of invading their privacy. A landmark ruling by the European Union court last year said individuals have a right to ask search engines to remove links if the information is outdated or irrelevant, known as the right to be forgotten law.

While Japan lacks such a law, courts have ordered Google to remove links from its search results in several cases, the company has said. Google is also appealing a Chiba District Court decision that ordered the company to remove negative reviews about a medical clinic on its Google Maps platform.

As of July 16, Google searches in Japanese turned up links to Web pages about named individuals convicted of paying underage girls for sex. It’s not clear whether these links are involved in the case, as neither the court nor Google released the complainant’s name.

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