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Will the world's longest-serving death row inmate be re-sentenced to death?

AFP/File, Kazuhiro Nogi

Will the world's longest-serving death row inmate be re-sentenced to death?

Asked by: Super Userkruijs in General » Crime
currently Open, suspends 09/30/2024 13:45 (in )



A man believed to be the world's longest-serving death row inmate was granted a retrial Thursday after decades in solitary confinement, in a rare about-face for Japan's rigid justice system.

Shizuoka District Court in central Japan ordered a fresh trial for Iwao Hakamada, 78, over the grisly 1966 murder of his boss and the man's family.

Presiding judge Hiroaki Murayama said he was concerned that investigators could have planted evidence to win a conviction as they sought to bring closure to a crime that had shocked the country.

"There is possibility that (key pieces of) evidence have been fabricated by investigative bodies," Murayama said in his ruling, according to Jiji Press.

Shizuoka prosecutors, who have three days to appeal the decision, told Japanese media that the court's decision was "unexpected".

Apart from the United States, Japan is the only major industrialised democracy to carry out capital punishment, a practice that has led to repeated protests from European governments and human rights groups.


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