Japan passes ‘Conspiracy’ law enacting punishment for plotting crimes despite nationwide opposition
 Source : News Bharati English  Date : 15-Jun-2017

Tokyo, June 15: In last month, Japan was loud against the anti-conspiracy bill. The bill proposes a new law under which citizens planning any crime will be punished. Even people may not actually commit the crime but still, they can be punished under the new law. Japan’s lawmakers have passed this controversial bill today. Japan government is promoting it as a step to counter terrorism but a large part of the citizens are not supporting it. Earlier UN also criticized this step.

"We want to use this law appropriately and effectively to protect the public's lives and property," Japan PM Shinzo Abe told local reporters after the cabinet meeting.  The bill faced high opposition in the upper house. But ruling party argued it as a security step for coming 2020 Tokyo Olympic. Japan is famous in World for the low crime rate in the nation. According to Liberal Democratic Party, this bill will make the nation safer and more secure.

Japan has already a law against organized crime syndicates. But still, it is a fundamental shift in Japan's penal code because previously someone could be punished for actually committing a crime.This is an amendment to the law. Under the law members of "terrorist groups or other organized crime groups” can be punished for plotting  277 different crimes.

The freedom of expression and right to privacy can be suppressed under this law. Opponents, legal experts have also expressed their concern regarding this. Joseph Cannataci, the U.N. special rapporteur warned Japan that the law could lead to undue restrictions on privacy and freedom of expression. The bill also covers theft of forestry products in reserved forest (the Forest Law); exporting without permission and destruction of important cultural properties (the Cultural Properties Preservation Law) and violations of copyrights (the Copyright Law).

In the support of bill, Justice Minister Katsutoshi Kaneda said: “it is expressly limited to organized criminal groups, the applicable crimes are listed and clearly defined and it applies only once actual preparatory actions have taken place."