Japan Olympic champ denies teen rape claim

Japan's retired double Olympic judo gold medallist Masato Uchishiba on Wednesday denied raping one of his teenage students in a hotel room, as his trial opened in Tokyo.

Uchishiba, 34, who won the 66kg title at the 2004 and 2008 Olympics, maintains he had consensual sex with the girl, who was drunk after a training camp party in the Japanese capital last September.

Prosecutors say Uchishiba attacked the girl, a member of the college judo team he coached, in a hotel room after she fell asleep at a karaoke parlour, intoxicated.

"When she became aware, she resisted by saying, 'What are you doing? Stop.' But he turned up the volume of the television and covered her mouth with his hand," prosecutors said, according to NHK.

The alleged victim is not being identified publicly because of the nature of the claim and her exact age at the time has not been given.

Married Uchishiba accepts that sex took place, but denies it was forceful.

"(The woman) was unmistakably awake. The action was done by mutual consent. I absolutely did not attack her," Uchishiba told the court, according to NHK.

Uchishiba was hailed as a hero at home when he became the first Japanese to win a gold medal in any sport at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, when Japan's judo medal haul of two was its lowest ever.

However, after the rape allegation was made last year, he was sacked by Kyushu University of Nursing and Social Welfare where he had been coaching its women's judo team since April 2010.


Get stories like this on the Yahoo app and discover more every day.
Download it now.

Latest News