Johnny Kitagawa victim calls for abolishing statute of limitations

One of the victims of sexual abuse by the late founder of major Japanese talent agency Johnny & Associates has called for the abolishment of the statute of limitations for sex crimes against children.

Ishimaru Shimon, the deputy head of an alleged victims' group, spoke in a hearing held by the opposition Constitutional Democratic Party on Tuesday.

The hearing comes after Johnny & Associates apologized and admitted that Johnny Kitagawa had sexually abused minors over many years.

Ishimaru said his group is still at the starting line. He said this issue is no longer just about one company, but is a comprehensive problem that involves the media, sponsors and legislation.

He noted that children are unable to speak out, so the statute of limitations on sex crimes against children should be abolished.

After the meeting, Ishimaru spoke to reporters about moves by some companies to avoid signing contracts with personalities represented by the Johnny & Associates agency. He said the performers have been closely associated with the companies until then and have human rights. He added that it is too hasty for businesses to decide not to hire them.