野球賭博汚染 暴力団排除が角界再生の道だ

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Jun. 17, 2010)
Sumo world must sever mobster ties
野球賭博汚染 暴力団排除が角界再生の道だ(6月16日付・読売社説)

Illegal gambling is rampant among sumo wrestlers. Popular sumo wrestler ozeki Kotomitsuki has admitted to the Japan Sumo Association that he gambled on professional baseball games--a criminal act. Following his admission, he will sit out the upcoming Nagoya Grand Sumo Tournament.
 大相撲の力士に賭博が蔓延(まんえん)していることが分かった。看板力士の大関琴光喜も、犯罪行為である野球賭博に手を染めていたことを認め、名古屋場所を休場することになった。

Sumo recently has been rocked by a string of scandals. Yokozuna Asashoryu was forced to retire earlier this year following allegations he assaulted a man outside a Tokyo club after a drinking session. The gambling blight even managed to taint an ozeki, sumo's second-highest rank. These extraordinary developments will shake the foundation of the association.
 暴行騒動で横綱朝青龍が引退に追い込まれたばかりの相撲界で、今度は大関の不祥事である。日本相撲協会の屋台骨を揺るがす異常事態といえよう。

The JSA recently asked sumo wrestlers, stablemasters and other association members to voluntarily report whether they had been involved in gambling activities. Kotomitsuki and 28 others admitted they had gambled on professional baseball games. Thirty-six others confessed to betting on golf, hanafuda playing cards and mah-jongg.
 相撲協会が、力士、親方らに自己申告させたところ、野球賭博には琴光喜を含む29人が関与したことを認めた。仲間内での賭けゴルフや花札、マージャンなどには36人がかかわっていた。

The association said it would report its findings to the Metropolitan Police Department and decide what further action to take after the police have completed their investigation.
 相撲協会は、調査結果を警視庁に報告し、捜査の結果を待って対応を決めるという。

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JSA let guard down

Association officials initially planned to put the scandal to bed after reprimanding those who voluntarily reported their wrongdoing. However, the association was forced to reverse the policy after the Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology Ministry, which oversees the association, stepped in. The ministry warned the association it would be premature to extenuate the misconduct before making a report to the police.
 当初は、申告した者については厳重注意にとどめて幕引きを図る方針だった。しかし、所管の文部科学省から、「警察にも言わない段階で情状酌量は早すぎる」と注意され、方針転換せざるを得なくなったというわけだ。

As such, the latest developments have exposed the association's lax way of dealing with serious matters.
 相撲協会の危機管理の甘さが露呈したといえる。

Organized crime syndicates are often behind gambling on professional baseball. Money wagered by sumo wrestlers must not be allowed to end up as funds for gang activities. We think the wrestlers involved should be severely punished.
 野球賭博には、暴力団がかかわっているケースが多い。力士の賭け金が暴力団の資金源となるようなことが、あってはならない。関係した力士への厳しい処分は避けられまい。

The latest scandal came to light in a report by a weekly magazine that Kotomitsuki had gambled on professional baseball and that gangsters had intimidated him into paying hush money.
 発端となったのは、琴光喜が野球賭博にかかわり、暴力団関係者から口止め料を払うよう脅されたという週刊誌の報道だ。

Although Kotomitsuki initially denied any involvement in gambling, he finally seemed to run out of excuses because other sumo wrestlers came forward to admit their misconduct to the sumo association. Regrettably, Kotomitsuki completely lacked the good sense expected of an ozeki, a rank expected to portray sumo values.
 琴光喜は賭博への関与を否定していたが、他の力士たちが申告するに及んで、言い逃れができなくなったということだろう。大相撲を担う大関としての自覚を全く欠いている。

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Money talks

Wealthy sumo supporters called tanimachi traditionally have provided financial assistance to wrestlers and stablemasters. Wrestlers and association members are said to sometimes come in contact with gangsters as they socialize with their tanimachi.
 相撲界には、「タニマチ」と呼ばれる後援者が力士や親方を援助する慣習がある。その付き合いの中で、力士らは暴力団関係者と接する機会もあるとされる。

There have been reports that criminal organizations have been involved in sumo events, such as tournaments held in local regions.
 地方巡業などの興行面でも、暴力団の介在が指摘されてきた。

It recently came to light that a number of gangsters had watched sumo from special ringside seats essentially set aside for the sumo association's financial supporters. A stablemaster who arranged seats for the mobsters has since had his stable disbanded by the association. The stablemaster eventually admitted he had socialized with gangsters.
 土俵近くの特別席で多数の暴力団員が観戦していたことも、問題になったばかりだ。席の確保にかかわっていた親方の部屋は閉鎖処分となり、この親方は、暴力団との交際があったことを認めた。

This series of unseemly incidents suggest there are deep-rooted links between sumo and organized crime.
 角界と暴力団との根深い癒着がうかがえる。

The JSA is a public-interest corporation, which receives preferential tax treatment, meaning sumo wrestlers and stablemasters belong to an organization supposed to contribute to society. In this respect, it is only natural that they immediately sever all ties with "antisocial forces."
 相撲協会は、税制面で優遇措置を受けている公益法人だ。社会に貢献すべき団体に属する力士や親方が、反社会勢力との関係を断つのは、当然のことである。

Freeing itself from unbecoming traditions is the only way the association will be able to survive.
 悪(あ)しき体質の一掃が、相撲協会が存続していく唯一の道だ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, June 16, 2010)
(2010年6月16日02時00分 読売新聞)
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by kiyoshimat | 2010-06-17 06:23 | 英字新聞

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