Fukushima disaster: Nuclear executives found not guilty

More than eight years after the Fukushima nuclear catastrophe, a Japanese court docket has cleared three former executives of the agency working the plant {of professional} negligence.

It was the one felony case to come up out of the catastrophe, which was the worst since Chernobyl in 1986.

In 2011 a plant operated by Tokyo Electric Power (Tepco) was hit by a tsunami inflicting a triple meltdown.

More than 470,000 individuals have been evacuated from their properties in consequence.

Nearly 18,500 died or are lacking from the broader catastrophe.

The three former executives – ex-chairman Tsunehisa Katsumata, 79, and vice-presidents Sakae Muto, 69 and Ichiro Takekuro, 73 – have been indicted for failing to implement tsunami countermeasures resulting in the deaths of 44 individuals.

Though no-one died immediately within the nuclear meltdown, greater than 40 hospital sufferers died after having to be rushed out of the evacuation zone.

Thirteen individuals have been additionally injured in hydrogen explosions on the plant.

In the much-anticipated verdict, a Tokyo court docket found all three males not guilty {of professional} negligence leading to loss of life and harm.

They have been going through 5 years in jail if convicted.

The prosecution argued that way back to 2002, the bosses had been warned that a big tsunami of greater than 15 metres might hit the plant, however had chosen to disregard the proof – and had not elevated their defences.

Dozens of protesters had gathered outdoors the Tokyo court docket forward of the ruling.

“If we do not hear guilty verdicts, our years-long efforts to carry this to court docket will not have been rewarded,” Saki Okawara, who travelled from the Fukushima area to listen to the ruling advised AFP.

“And Japanese society’s culture of no-one taking responsibility will continue.”

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