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Matsumoto Hitoshi sues Shukan Bunshun over doubtful sexual harassment report…demanding 550 million yen in damages

Matsumoto Hitoshi, a member of the comedy duo ‘Downtown’, was reported by Weekly Bunshun for allegedly forcing sexual acts. In response to the allegations, he filed a defamation lawsuit for damages at the Tokyo District Court. He has always denied the allegations, but his claims have been cast in doubt due to the report from Weekly Bunshun and comments from within and outside the industry.

This issue has been discussed on prominent TV programs, garnering significant public attention. Notably, Fuji TV’s ‘Mezamashi 8’ and TBS’s ‘Gogosma’ have reported on Matsumoto’s case. Additionally, Matsumoto’s decision to launch a substantial lawsuit against Bungeishunju Publishers, which publishes Weekly Bunshun, has become a major topic of discussion.

Matsumoto Hitoshi is seeking a large damages payment of 550 million yen from Bungeishunju and the editor-in-chief of Weekly Bunshun. However, it is unclear at this time whether his lawsuit will succeed, with no clear outlook on his chances of winning. The situation will likely fluctuate depending on future developments.

Matsumoto’s actions also come amid implications from the internal governance committee. It has been reported that this committee, composed of expert participants, has advised on the necessity of fact-checking and responsibility to explain. While it is unclear whether this advice was heeded, the pressure from the surrounding environment may have influenced the decision to file the lawsuit.

Given these circumstances, this issue is not just about Matsumoto Hitoshi but also calls into question the reporting ethics of the media and the openness in the entertainment industry. Continued follow-up reports and uncovering the truth are required..


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