Uehara, a member of the J-pop group Speed, was awarded damages of 1.1 million yen for an article about the dark relationship between organized crime and the entertainment industry that appeared in the September 15 (2011) issue of weekly tabloid Shukan Bunshun.
The entertainer was critical over the publication of her photo in the magazine and in advertisements for the issue. The article claimed that she had visited a special club inside a building in the Nishi Azabu area of Minato Ward that was known for its gangster affiliations.
Uehara was introduced to the club through a television program. “A single visit does not constitute a connection to organized crime,” said Presiding judge Minoru Hatakeyama.
A representative from the editorial department at Shukan Bunshun, which is owned by Bungeishunju, said that the publication is considering an appeal.