Teacher Awarded $225,000 for Stealing $10

osaka-courthouse.jpg

Even those familiar with the near legal invulnerability of Japanese teachers have been astonished by a court verdict which saw a teacher who stole ¥766 of food from a supermarket being awarded ¥18,000,000 after her employers had the temerity to attempt to punish her.

The case centres on a 60-year-old former Osaka high school teacher, originally arrested in 2008 after being caught red-handed stealing pork and cucumber worth ¥766 from a Nara supermarket, although charges were eventually dropped.

However, the prefectural school board decided it should not be employing a known thief as a teacher, and sacked her in 2009 as punishment, also stripping her of her teaching license.

She then sued the board in late 2010, demanding she be reinstated.

The court finally rendered a verdict in early 2012, ruling that “compared to the amount she shoplifted, the financial damage inflicted on the woman by stripping her of her teaching license and similar was too great.”

The board appealed, but lost and was told to pay a severance payment equivalent to the value of her lost  teaching license, which was set at approximately ¥18,000,000.

The school board responsible has said it will not appeal the ruling further as it doubts its chances of winning, and instead agreed to pay the settlement.

There is considerable outrage at this latest example of the pampering enjoyed by Japan’s teaching profession, already notorious as being perhaps the nation’s leading employer of sex criminals:

“Like it’s the amount that matters!”

“She steals from the shops and then steals our taxes…”

“I don’t think it’s the amount she stole which is at issue, but the fact she stole it in the first place…”

“How can you justify employing a thief as a teacher? What would her pupils think?”

“It’s hard to imagine this was the only time she was doing this. It is shoplifting after all.”

“Shoplifting is a crime of habit. It’s obvious she did it before she was caught. So why do these moron feel they ought to waste so much of our taxes on her?”

“They should consider the damage a woman like this inflicted on her students by teaching them.”

“Why didn’t they press charges against her for shopifting anyway?”

“And why did it take her nearly 2 years to decide to sue the school board!”

“She’s certainly been an education to her students.”

“Considering how much they had to pay out for nothing in return, in purely monetary terms they should have just kept her on.”

“No wonder they never get fired.”

“Teachers really are nothing but scum, aren’t they?”

“Japan’s civil servants are innocent when they steal, and can even draw a pension…”

“What happened to our courts?”

“They are run by civil servants as well.”


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    67 Comments
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    Comment by Anonymous
    00:15 17/05/2012 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    I imagine the issue at hand is that the shoplifting charges were dropped. Had they been pursued they could have justified her firing, but the argument was likely that since she wasn't found guilty of the crime then she should have either been reinstated as a teacher or at least had her license returned.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:40 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    So, your solution to petty thieves is to... deny them a legal source of income? I sure don't see how that could possibly go wrong.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:27 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Not just that, but the teacher was never ‘awarded for stealing’. The money she got was compensation for the unjust actions of the school against her. And knowing one or two things about licences and how much money they cost and what the loss of one does to ones life, I think the compensation is fair.
    In this case, the charges were dropped, so I have doubts what ‘caught red-handed’ even means here, but even if she were guilty, the school is not the public prosecutor. And she would probably have just gotten a minor statutory fine and maybe a few days to think about what she did, after which she would have paid her debt to society and that should be that.

    Comment by Anonymous

    Time to go shoplifting

    Avatar of shiroki
    Comment by shiroki
    12:07 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (-0.2)

    Fault in technicality. The beauty of federal justice.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:40 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Japan is not a federation...

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:15 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Morons, the whole lot of you.

    She didn't steal. I don't care what you say the charges were dropped maybe she forgot to pay or something.

    Forgetting to pay is not the equivalent of stealing if the operator in question didn't charge for the item.

    She deserved to get her money back or whatever compensation just caused. IF she was fined/sued its a different matter it wasn't so that's it.

    HOW COULD ANYONE BE ASTONISHED IF SHE DIDN'T GET ANY CRIMINAL CHARGES LAY ON YOU? It's like someone falsely put into a jail for murder and proved they didn't commit murder.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:26 18/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    People just don't have the brains to do that 21:15.

    Avatar of kazaza2
    Comment by kazaza2
    00:02 17/05/2012 # ! Quality (+0.8)

    Maybe I'm missing something here but even if she was caught "red handed" the charges were dropped so she wasn't really convicted of anything.

    If that's the case how does the school board have the right to fire her and revoke her teaching license?

    Legally I think they overreacted and got burned. As far as the "excessive" award , if you consider the fact it supposedly costs around $2,000 just to get a drivers license in Japan then the award to reinstate teachers credentials doesn't seem so outlandish.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:59 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    They had to pay for taking her quality of life, along with additional damages for time lost.

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:39 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    IMO that school got what they deserved, sacking her and revoking her liscense is a little extreme for a 10 dollar theift imo.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:28 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    How would she be fireable even if the charge had stuck? It's not the employer's place to act as judge, jury and penal system.

    Especially where the teaching license is concerned. Losing that basically means losing your profession, and in proportion to that some $225k seems to have been adjusted according to her remaining years before retirement (five-ish, right? so about a year's pay for each).

    Avatar of Gitami
    Comment by Gitami
    14:23 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Why were the charges dropped?
    The prosecutor probably thought being lenient so she can keep her job rather than be fired for 800 yen.
    Ironic all the way to the end.

    If a financial auditor did that they may lose their license. If a doctor did that they'd probably warn him. And for a teacher they'd be warned too.

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:48 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    I think it has more to do with all the OTHER cases involving teachers. You know, the ones where they molest students and are suspended for a while or even promoted then they fire people for things that aren't illegal or harmful to students.

    It's less the case and more the overall hypocracy of it all.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:26 17/05/2012 # ! Good (+0.8)

    Hold on, hold on here! TFA says "caught red-handed stealing", but also says, "charges were eventually dropped".

    Presuming lack of corruption and lack of bribery, fi the charges were dropped, then teach is legally "not guilty" (of that specific instance).

    The school board not only fired him, but wrongly interfered with his future employability by stripping him of his teaching certificate, which they reasonably should not be able to take from him as long as he passed the tests one takes to get it.

    Damn right he should have sued the board, and damn right he should have won the suit.

    Avatar of Hayate
    Comment by Hayate
    22:42 16/05/2012 # ! Good (+0.6)

    this teacher is definitely in the wrong place
    she should be a lawyer instead

    Avatar of ArrowInTheKnee
    Comment by ArrowInTheKnee
    00:27 17/05/2012 # ! Good (+0.6)

    I need to hire her for advice on how to gain money from groping lolis

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:41 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Haven't you been reading Sankaku? Be a teacher in Japan.

    Avatar of MADB
    Comment by MADB

    lol ... her is she ... you probably talking about groping shota's c***** or something XD

    Avatar of lovetraps
    Comment by lovetraps
    22:02 16/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Being a civil servant in japan is like the best job in the world. Lolis and Money where can you go wrong with that?

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:24 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    2 things:

    -in most civilised countries double punitions are illegal. (which is moot since the charge were dropped so NO punitions had to be set).

    -AND, matters of law are not to be ruled by random citizens or entities... It's the role of the judeges to set punitions to a crime. Not some random pedophyle punks in a schoolboard to decide to get high and mighty.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:52 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    They had no grounds for dismissing her due to criminal charges as she was never charged!

    They would have had better luck dismissing her by any other made up reason~! If employment laws there allow for dismissal without reasons with notice and/or severance benefits then that would have been a better bet.

    Alternatively use something more solid like bringing the profession into disrepute.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:58 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    While I do not agree with her being sacked on an unrelated incident, revoking her teaching license is the real crime here. They effectively stole her quality of life and that is why they were forced to pay restitution.

    Funny thou, if she had sex with a student, she would have been forced to resign and the school would have brushed the whole thing under the rug, not revoke her teaching license.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:14 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    schoolgirl= blackmail rape.
    teacher = financial compensation.
    man. ero doujin have new scenario

    Avatar of Ishmon16
    Comment by Ishmon16
    12:08 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    I stole $3 from a cash register, Where's my $150,000?

    Comment by Anonymous
    19:21 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    so all i have to do if i decide that i get rich quick is

    1. be a teacher
    2. go to shops and steal something
    3. get caught on purpose
    4. get fired
    5. sue
    6. profit!!!

    Avatar of Gradius
    Comment by Gradius
    09:31 18/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Notorious Monster detected!

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:29 18/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Practical application to life, firsthand teaching.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:13 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    i bet she uses hacks irl

    Avatar of Lunatique
    Comment by Lunatique
    00:30 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Osaka again...

    Avatar of Zanshin
    Comment by Zanshin
    03:22 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (-0.2)

    大阪言うなアホ!

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:15 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    English motherfucker, do you speak it?

    Comment by Anonymous

    Go fuck yourself Jap shit.

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:49 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Well, the language here is english. It's not too much to ask that visitors, no matter their origin, speak english too.

    Comment by Anonymous

    This is a site that "mainly" consists of Japanese stuff, you worthless racist trash.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:47 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Simple case of two wrongs making a person very rich. It's just easier to squeeze penalty money from the government than a small business.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:19 18/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    The is not very rich.

    Avatar of cuppatea@yahoo.co.jp
    23:46 16/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Ah, it's Osaka. It's a terrible place to live and it has awful schools. Nothing to see here, move along, etc.

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:20 16/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Onizuka had the right idea all along putting up with that bullshit from Holy Forest High.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:20 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    she's probably a female version of onizuka's ... naahh guess not ...

    Avatar of Dia
    Comment by Dia
    22:26 16/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    From a legal standpoint, this is all right. After all, you wouldn't want extra-legal punishment such as revoking a license for a minor offense (shoplifting/stroking a loli). If you think thieves shouldn't teach, then make a clean record a requirement for the license.

    They should have only fired her.

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:53 16/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Yeah, revoking her license was just plain stupid. I suspect the school board disliked her and thought they'd get away with taking her license as punishment ;o ...

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:33 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    They should not make a 'clean record' a requirement because the fact is that everyone gets in trouble with the police from time to time.

    I've personally been harassed by them for hanging out at a local park WITH THE CHILDREN OF FRIENDS.

    Avatar of PirateKing
    Comment by PirateKing
    22:30 16/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Wanna bet that if the teacher was a guy instead of an old woman he would have ended up in jail ?

    Comment by Anonymous

    A guy would've just given his kids some one-on-one private tutoring instead of shoplifting... so no, nothing would have happened.

    Avatar of PirateKing
    Comment by PirateKing
    05:57 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    you're a fucking retard.

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:45 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    00:25
    U what say sense makes it doesnt.

    Avatar of Red
    Comment by Red
    22:40 16/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    The more of such stuff happening, the less I want to give further f*ck about the world, and just let it go wild.

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:17 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    sheesh guys teacher is .... umm teacher is a noble profession ye know ? .... its just people ... see ?

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:41 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Teacher in Osaka gets rewarded for stealing ten dollars worth of stuff.

    While Police in Osaka hunt for guys who have done nothing more than glance at schoolgirls.

    Be glad we don't live in Osaka.

    Comment by Purple Mage
    02:24 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Loosing her teaching license over such a small value item is admittedly probably overly harsh.
    But being awarded $225,000 in damages is kinda crazy as well.
    Still they should have just reinstate her teaching license since the charges were dropped.

    Avatar of Erranty
    Comment by Erranty
    03:12 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    I don't think they can reinstate it. Which would mean that money which was awarded was probably the College tuition, Licensing Fees, and Legal Fees that she incurred. To be honest, in America she'd get even more money.

    Comment by Purple Mage
    03:38 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    At first it seemed like a frivolous law suit but the more I look at it the worse the school board's case looks.
    I suspect they might have been wanting an excuse to get rid of someone close to retirement age and replace them with someone younger or a foreign immigrant who is willing to work for less.

    If that's the case this they might have gotten off easy.
    In the US this could result in an investigation or even a teachers strike if age discrimination is the true cause for their actions.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:15 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Being awarded $225,000 in damages, because somebody wrongfully took away your employment and tried to prevent you from getting future employment is to little?

    They cost this person years of income, I don't think it was out of line, off hand, I'm not sure it was enough considering the the lawyer will probably get half if not more?

    And now this person is also going to have trouble finding employment because they sued their last employer?

    They judge wasn't harsh enough in penalizing, there should have been additional damages on top of that just to cover legal expenses.

    The little fucks are just out what they would have payed her over that time, no great loss for them, they will probably continue to be shits and take their chances fucking somebody else over; again.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:30 17/05/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Agreed. The dumbasses shouldn't have tried to 'punish' her in the first place, everyone gets in trouble with the police at some point in their lives or 'steals' something.

    Yes, I am stating that as a blunt fact, I've seen it way too many times to say it is anything other than that.




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