Subject: [cwj 35] Japan Companies Named in Slave Labor Suit
From: Corporate Watch in Japanese <>
Date: Sun, 11 Jun 2000 13:51:28 -0700
Seq: 35

Japanese corporations forced more than 1 million (mostly Chinese and
Korean) workers to work at their factories in Japan and outside.  Justice
has not yet been served, with the Japanese government and judiciary siding
with the corporations in denying responsibility and compensation.
Unfortunately, time is running out as many of these workers used as slaves
by corporations are dying.  The companies know this and are stalling,
thinking the problem will go away.  However, the movement for holding these
corporations accountable for their actions during WWII is getting stronger-
with the new California amendment as well as the (unsatisfactory but
welcome) settlement in Germany by corporations this year for using Jews as
slave labor during WWII.  Two major US companies, Ford and General Motors,
are also being sued for using slave labor in Gernamy.

For more info on forced labor and Japanese corporations, see


Wednesday June 7 9:41 PM ET 

Japan Cos. Named in Slave Labor Suit

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Six big Japanese companies and hundreds of their
subsidiaries doing business in California are named in a lawsuit by a
Filipino man seeking compensation for enslavement, forced labor, torture
and starvation during World War II.

Perfecto Llanza, 74, seeks class-action status for the lawsuit filed
Tuesday in Los Angeles County Superior Court.

A California law specifically allows people who claim to have been forced
into slave to seek reparations from companies that profited from their work
and now do business in California.

Japanese soldiers turned Filipino civilians and prisoners of war over to
the companies to serve as unpaid labor for mining, shipbuilding,
steelmaking and other purposes, the suit says.

Many workers died while being transported by sea or rail in hot, crowded
conditions, and others were held in concentration camps between 1941 and
1945 without adequate food or medical aid under threat of death if they did
not work, the suit says.

The lawsuit does not specify the amount of compensation being sought.

Defendants include Mitsubishi Corp., Mitsui Mining Co. Ltd, Mitsui & Co.
(USA), Mitsui Mining USA Inc., Nippon Steel Corp., Nippon Steel USA and up
to 2,000 subsidiaries. Calls to Mitsubishi in New York and Mitsui Mining
USA in the Los Angeles suburb of Torrance seeking comment on the suit were
not immediately returned. The Japanese government was not named.

The suit says Llanza was forced to work on Mitsubishi Corp. construction
projects from April 1942 to June 1944.

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