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crime

60-year-old man arrested for stealing ¥1,000 from shrine donation box

29 Comments

Police in Gotemba, Shizuoka Prefecture, have arrested a 60-year-old unemployed man of no fixed address on suspicion of stealing money from a donation box at a shrine on Sunday.

According to police, the man has admitted to stealing about 1,000 yen in coins from the donation box and said he needed the money for food, local media reported.  

Police said the man was caught in the act at around 11:30 p.m. Saturday by a police patrol which had been alerted due to prior thefts from the donation box.

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29 Comments
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Nice to see the police keeping us safe from such vicious criminals.

-1 ( +16 / -17 )

According to police, the man has admitted to stealing about 1,000 yen in coins from the donation box and said he needed the money for food, local media reported. 

I thought one of the purposes of religious institutions receiving tax exempt status and being able to hold vast legacy assets is that they in return give assistance to those in need?

Seems like it would have been a great opportunity to show their value to the community.

5 ( +18 / -13 )

There were prior thefts... at some point they had to do something about it.

1 ( +8 / -7 )

I hope that man gets help..

The 1000 yen robbery making national headlines, again and now in 2023 proving that Japan is one of the safest countries to live in the world..

-18 ( +4 / -22 )

Nice to see the police keeping us safe from such vicious criminals.

The police are just doing their jobs, people were stealing from the shrine and they were called to deal with it, with some luck the thief will get some help.

4 ( +11 / -7 )

The money are donations to pray for the dead and how about to help those are alive and in need. This man clearly was an individual in need and took only a thousand yen probably to buy food and clearly not to prosper this story is sad indeed.

7 ( +12 / -5 )

I assume you must be really in a terrible situation when you steal money from a shrine. Obviously there was no other choice for him.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

I used to work with some old men receiving pensions ¥500,000 every 2 months yet still working for some 4 to 5 hrs 5 times a week. And used to work with some old women as old as 72. Some oldies are used to making dramas all the while wasting their little money on pachinkos.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

The 1000 yen robbery making national headlines, again and now in 2023 proving that Japan is one of the safest countries to live in the world..

This didnt make national headlines.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

He should be sentenced to sweeping leaves and moving snow, two hours every morning and in return for being given a hearty healthy meal.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Can someone help this guy so he doesn’t have to steal 1000 yen from the box?

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Obviously there was no other choice for him.

He apparently could not think of an option more attractive to him.

Still, his action was pathetic. Is no help available?

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Obviously there was no other choice for him.

Sure there was, he could have asked the monks for food !

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Shrines combined amass billions of yens every year, real thieves roam freely the streets of Tokyo every day and then a homeless guy steals ¥1000 and he is the worst!

7 ( +9 / -2 )

This same story comes up year after year.

I guess what irritates some of us is why is it necessary to arrest the man?

Arrest is a formal process registering a black mark on a record - plus how long in jail/detention?

Perhaps stern talking / warning about his actions and then some guidance and help and introductions may be a better course.

The question to be asked is why an apparently homeless man, in very cold winter is stealing small change from a shrine?

5 ( +6 / -1 )

The question to be asked is why an apparently homeless man, in very cold winter is stealing small change from a shrine?

I remember being nonplussed when I first saw a shaven headed monk in robes step out of a Hermes store with several shopping bags in Ginza and get into a chauffeured Mercedes.

Of course, America also has its rich televangelists.

Another question is why such tax exempt wealth is allowed to carry on with little regard to people with so little?

It would seem to go against the tenets of the doctrines they so emptily preach.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

So, you have to pay for a priest to say a prayer for you. You have to pay to get a trinket of Buddha. You have to pay for any kind of thing that saves you from the debts of hell ~ and this guy who is starving and homeless in this freezing winter weather took some coins to take care of himself in a country that does not care about the homeless at all.

If this guy cannot take some coins for food and maybe a place to lay his head for the night, what good are the shrines and temples in Japan other than it being a business model?

4 ( +8 / -4 )

@trinklets2

You ever think that a 72yo receiving 250k a month in pension is working part time for some reason other than money? Social interaction, something to do for the next couple of decades?

And aren’t these donation boxes at neighborhood shrines locked anyways? He should have gone to a Mormon church instead cause they’ll feed and bathe the homeless if they pretend to be interested in Jacob Smith.

The guy could have received help if he had asked for it at a ward office. He wouldn’t be eligible for normal seikatsu hogo welfare because you need a fixed address first to enroll. But I know they have other programs available that set homeless people up in dormitories and help the mentally and physically able ones find some kind of part time employment.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

The real crime is tax exemption for religious organizations. All those "donations" and fees for "services" are tax free. You will never find a poor priest in Japan.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

@Mr.Kipling Spot on!!

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

@Gaijinjland

You ever think that a 72yo receiving 250k a month in pension is working part time for some reason other than money? Social interaction, something to do for the next couple of decades?

Receiving less than US $250 a month is working for social interaction, yea sure that makes a lot of sense NOT.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Crime of convenience!

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

@James

Receiving less than US $250 a month is working for social interaction, yea sure that makes a lot of sense NOT.

250K does not equal $250

25K equals around $250

250K equals around $2,400 ( a little less)

Who is confused? James? or Gaijinland?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

if he did this for nutrition and criminal intent is at its' least, why not have him apologize and that's it. Here in this country, people can do just about anything and apologize and go on with it. I think it's all stupid to shun an old person like that, what's the point of Christmas if everyone is gonna act like Scrooges.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The good news is he will have a warm bed and food, while in custody. Maybe that was his aim all along. Winter is not the time to be sleeping rough in Japan!

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

Shrines and temples raking it in and it seems no gesture from this particular one when it's clear this poor fellow was homeless. Temples and shrines and their 'priests' simply don't care about people and communities. All they do is take.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Michael Machida - You have to pay for any kind of thing that saves you from the debts of hell... 

FYI, it's "depths of hell".

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

TokyoLiving - The 1000 yen robbery making national headlines, 

Japan Today, as interesting and informative as it is, is definitely not "national headlines".

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Anyway, something is wrong here. If he really suffered from hunger and wanted food, then he would have gone to an eatery without paying afterwards or going to a supermarket and eating a little bit right out of the shelves without being able to pay afterwards, or he would have stolen those food and drink cans etc which ate often to see in temples and shrines, originally designated to those gods or buddhas or as decoration, whatever. Stealing that money there is just only a crime and has nothing to do with his hunger for food.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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