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Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2001

Toki cleared to wrestle by JSA

The Japan Sumo Association (JSA) on Monday hit Toki with a 20 percent cut in pay for the next three months, three months after the Takasago stable wrestler was involved in a car accident that killed an Osaka woman.

The JSA, however, also removed its order that Toki remain at home, clearing the way for the former top maegashira to wrestle in the upcoming spring tourney in Osaka after he was ordered to sit out the New Year meet in January.

The JSA decision follows a ruling last week by the Osaka Summary Court, finding Toki guilty of negligence in the operation of an automobile resulting in death and fining the wrestler 200,000 yen.

"Words are not enough to apologize for the trouble and grief I have brought upon the victim's family and others," Toki told reporters as Tokyo's Ryogoku Kokugikan.

"I want to try my best in the future for the JSA and the Takasago stable."

JSA officials hinted last month that they may allow Toki to return to the ring in March, but were waiting for the court to issue its ruling. The ruling was issued Feb. 14 and the fine paid.

Toki, 26, has indicated that he would like to return to practice as soon as possible, but relatives of the victim have protested against seeing his return to sumo in Osaka.

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The Japan Times

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