Yokozuna Harmuafuji Incident Heads To A Prosecutor


In an article in today’s Japan Times, it is reported that police have decided to refer Takanoiwa’s assault by Yokozuna Harumafuji to a prosecutor for adjudication. This does not mean that Haruamfuji will be charged with a crime, simply that police think there is sufficient evidence to allow a lawyer for the state to decide if he should be charged with assault.

During police questioning, Harumafuji did admit to hitting Takanoiwa with his open hands, his fists and the remote to a karaoke machine during an attempt to discipline Takanoiwa for poor manners. It should be noted that both rikishi were intoxicated at the time. The incident happened in front of a sizable contingent of sumotori during an overnight stop on sumo’s fall jungyo promotional tour.

It has been reported that both Harumafuji and Takanoiwa are cooperating with police. The same cannot be said for the Sumo Kyokai’s investigation, where Takanoiwa and Takanoiwa’s Oyakata, the former Yokozuna Takanohana, are impeding progress. Takanohana’s behavior in the matter, and in the events leading up to the scandal breaking during the Kyushu basho, have been difficult to understand. Reports in the past week have suggested that Takanohana, who leads the jungyo promotional tour segment of the Sumo Kyokai, will be suspended for not maintaining proper order and discipline.

For fans wondering what action the Sumo Kyokai will take, I suggest that we will have no word until the final day of the Kyushu basho on Sunday the 26th. Typically the Yokozuna Deliberation Council meets following each tournament, and there will likely be a good deal of commentary from that body.

5 thoughts on “Yokozuna Harmuafuji Incident Heads To A Prosecutor

  1. A little correction: Takanoiwa cooperated with police, but not with the kyokai investigation. His current location is unknown and his shisho refuses to let him be interviewed by the kyokai’s crisis management committee. At least that’s what I read in yesterday’s news.

      • I read everything, but I try to only tweet things that are above the “sensationalist gossip” threshold.

        Speaking of which, if you want to get the Takanohana point of view, apparently he sees himself as the Whistle Blower who is out to fight the NSK’s culture of silence and keeping things under wraps. Much in keeping with his “reform” ideas.

        Only this gets marred a bit when you take into consideration another thing that floated in the news recently – that Takanoiwa himself has hit a lower-ranked rikishi in the Summer jungyo and nothing was done about it. Overlooking the smear attempt against the victim here, the reason I tweeted this story at the time is that this implies Takanohana is selective about his whistle blowing.

        I’m surprised the police made a decision already, as they don’t seem to have interviewed Hakuho and Ishiura yet. They will be available for questioning after the basho, at which point the NSK’s committee will also interview them. So don’t expect decisions the day after senshuraku.

        • The other problem here is that any interference that Takanohana runs with the kyokai investigation looks incredibly selfish at this point. If cooperation with both the police and the investigation was done, there were things that weren’t spoken about in public and Takanohana “spoke out” about them that would be radically different than what’s occurred. Also, if Takanoiwa did strike another rikishi during the Jungyo and nothing was done that will make things a lot worse too.


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.