Icelandic court: Bobby Fischer was legally married to Japanese wife

The Reykjavik District Court yesterday declared that Miyoko Watai was chess grand master Bobby Fischer’s legal wife after all.

The question of the American chess player’s marriage has more than once come before Icelandic courts, including the Supreme Court. The case was re-opened because of new evidence — evidence which has changed the outcome.

Bobby Fischer’s sisters first brought the case that his marriage to Miyoko Watai from Japan was not legal. In the Reykjavik District Court’s latest ruling, it has been declared that Watai produced satisfactory evidence to prove that she was married to Bobby Fischer at the time of his death, RUV reports.

Fischer’s sisters now have to pay ISK 6,650,000 (EUR 41,337) in legal costs.

Bobby Fischer’s estate is being taken care of in Iceland because he was made an Icelandic citizen after release from a Japanese prison and was resident in the country when he died. He is buried in South Iceland.

Iceland granted Fischer citizenship to avoid him facing trial in the USA for violating trade sanctions with Yugoslavia by playing and beating Boris Spassky in the country during Communist times. Iceland has had an affinity with arguably one of the best chess players ever, since he won the world championship in Reykjavik in the early 70s. A match which brought welcome and unusual world attention to Reykjavik.