crime

Actress Yoshiko Mita’s son gets suspended sentence after 4th arrest for using stimulant drugs

32 Comments

The Tokyo District Court on Thursday sentenced Yuya Takahashi, 39, the youngest son of actress Yoshiko Mita, to 2 1/2 years in prison, suspended for five years for possession of stimulants.

Takahashi was arrested on Sept 9 on suspicion of using stimulant drugs. It was his fourth arrest on charges related to illegal stimulants.

The court heard that he admitted to using the stimulants (called kakuseizai in Japanese) between late August and Sept 9 when he was arrested following an altercation with another person at a Shibuya bar, Fuji TV reported. Police were called and Takahashi was arrested after a urine test showed traces of stimulants in his system.

Takahashi was previously arrested for possession of stimulants three times between 1998 and 2007.

After his arrest, his mother released a public statement in which she said: “I am sincerely sorry for the trouble my son has caused over this incident. He is suffering from schizophrenia and had been trying hard, such as visiting a psychiatrist. However, with this latest incident, I can only say how terribly disappointed I am.”

The statement also said: “As a parent, I currently feel overwhelmed by my lack of ability. In addition, Yuya is almost approaching 40, and I strongly believe that he needs to take full responsibility and be determined to atone for his crimes henceforth.”

In handing down the court ruling, the presiding judge told Takahashi: “You have to think about how to create an environment day by day which will help you avoid using stimulants.”

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32 Comments
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Being caught with stimulants for the 4th time and never seen the inside of a gaol?

Remarkable....

12 ( +13 / -1 )

Atare Mae, Atare Mae, Atare Mae Taiso. Welcome to Japan, where the famous and connected elite can offend with impunity. But my stepson, who is a regular Joe, spent weeks in jail and endured multiple drug tests and interrogations all because somebody mentioned his name. BTW, all his drug tests were negative.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

@ kurisupisu - it's like my wife keeps reminding me, "this is Japan".

8 ( +9 / -1 )

"I strongly believe that he needs to take full responsibility"... because he hasn't so far, "and be determined"... just be determined to, not really do it "to atone for his crimes henceforth."... starting now after his fourth arrest, while mere peasants would be forced to after one strike.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

sensei258, I agree with you about the two tiered justice system, but for the record, wouldn't you agree that Japan's drug laws as written are a bit draconian?

That ideally your stepson or Mita's son should both be treated leniently and if found guilty of any offense receive treatment not incarceration or excessive punishment of any kind?

6 ( +6 / -0 )

How about mandatory addiction counseling to go along with two years of community service?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Drug addiction is an illness, so I beleive the penaltry fits the crime here. Well done Judges.

BUT...

What about everyone else doing PRISON TIME for the same offence? Japan just can't get things right.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

How about mandatory addiction counseling to go along with two years of community service?

Again, I keep saying this over and over. Common sense and logic can't be found here. Better get used to it.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

My parents kicked me out when I was 19. This guy is 40. Why she has to care? Japanese society has too many rules. I made a life for myself without evil drugs or violence. Supporting him encourages him to continue the same path.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

This guy is 40. Why she has to care?

You don't have kids do you?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Is this meth?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

“You have to think about how to create an environment day by day which will help you avoid using stimulants.”

Wow! What a kind judge! He should have gone to jail the second or third time he was busted. I have a foreign friend who did six months in prison for having one gram of pot in his pocket (first offense). Japan definitely is a land of contrasts.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

After his arrest, his mother released a public statement in which she said: “I am sincerely sorry for the trouble my son has caused over this incident. 

I know she's an actress, but the guy is well above adulthood. Why should she have to apologize? No way. Her son did this to himself, let him apologize. If I was a celebrity and my kids, who were at least 20 got into trouble, I would tell the media to get the apology from them. Part of being an adult is responsibility, no matter if their parents are famous.

If my kids are late getting to school for something they did (ie. horsing around, watching TV, etc.) they know THEY have to apologize, not me.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Being caught with stimulants for the 4th time and never seen the inside of a gaol?

Remarkable....

What's crazy is that it should be remarkable that they put someone in jail for drugs, not that they don't.

Drugs should be treated as a mental health issue, not as a criminal issue. Treating drugs criminally is the entire wrong approach to drugs.

I know she's an actress, but the guy is well above adulthood. Why should she have to apologize? No way.

That's looking at the situation through your western cultural lens. The way things work here is that she would be criticized for NOT saying something, and they would look at a similar situation int he west and wonder why the parent wasn't apologizing.

Things work different ways in different societies.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

What I have learned about japan while living here is that if you're a celebrity (singer, actor/actress, reporter, police officer) someone in the know or someone with money you or your family members can get away with ANYTHING normal, hard working people would get jail time for. 4x this guy got a get out of jail free card for drugs? If you or me were caught with 1 weed seed, JUST ONE, we'd be looking at some hard time for a long time.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

All of those screaming bloody murder, and privilege of the rich regarding this poor chaps meth addiction may want to take a step back. Don’t know what sort of sheltered lives you’ve been living but anyone that knows what a serious ice addiction looks like understands; you’re never the same after it and that this can hit anyone’s family member in any strata of society. Must be so nice to able to judge that easily.

Hope this young guy gets the support and treatment he needs. The odds are actually stacked pretty much against him if he has a long term habit.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Messy, messy situation.

While Yuya does need to grow up and get some help, I have a nagging thought that his mother isn't undeserving of some blame.

What's the bet that while little Yuya was needing some quality bonding time in his formative years, Yoshiko was out there talenting her way around or whatever it is that celebrities do. Who was looking after him? No mention of the father here so don't know what his role was. And so we have another poor sonofagun who can't get his act together.

Parents, put your kids first.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

hard working people would get jail time for. 4x this guy got a get out of jail free card for drugs? If you or me were caught with 1 weed seed, JUST ONE, we'd be looking at some hard time for a long time.

As I understand it, pretty much everyone gets a suspended sentence (執行猶予) their first time for possession. Even foreigners. Have you seen information to show that my understanding is wrong?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Strangerland - As I understand it, pretty much everyone gets a suspended sentence (執行猶予) their first time for possession. Even foreigners. Have you seen information to show that my understanding is wrong?

Did you not see my previous post stating an acquaintance of mine (from the Philippines) did six months for a gram of pot, first offense?

So, how does one get a suspended sentence for their fourth offense? Is it fame or fortune?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I hope they charge him to the fullest extent of the law. The frequency of repeat arrests pretty much tells you he is taking advantage of the celebrity status his mother has afforded him. He nor she is not above the law or of a privileged class to get special considerations that it's on normal citizens are afforded.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Strangerland: "As I understand it, pretty much everyone gets a suspended sentence (執行猶予) their first time for possession. Even foreigners."

What's your understanding on the FOURTH time, or are you going to deny celebrity has no part in this?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

What's your understanding on the FOURTH time, or are you going to deny celebrity has no part in this?

I don't have an understanding on that, and to be honest, I don't know if that is the standard or not. Do you? Have you got something to show that non-celebrities get jail on the fourth time, while celebrities don't? I'm open to the possibility, if not even probability, but so far we have people making claims of fact, without any proof of the fact. If it really is a problem, then it should be condemned, but if it's not really a problem, then condemning it as such is a problem.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Did you not see my previous post stating an acquaintance of mine (from the Philippines) did six months for a gram of pot, first offense?

And the one person I know who got arrested for growing a plant on his balcony got a suspended sentence.

I'm not looking for anecdotal evidence, I'm looking for some real numbers. There will always be anecdotes to prove the exception.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

So, how does one get a suspended sentence for their fourth offense? Is it fame or fortune?

Maybe it's Japan's answer to "Double secret probation," or in this case, Quadruple secret probation.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Have you got something to show that non-celebrities get jail on the fourth time, while celebrities don't?

Why would someone waste time trying to prove that when they can easily prove foreigners serving jail time on the first offense?

Now, that being said. No one has mentioned that those people spending long periods of time in jail could have been waiting for their cases to go to trial. I heard bail here is ridiculously high regardless of the crime.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The jsutice system in every country is multi-tiered. Other countries, however, have counselling, detox and rehab facilities for those who are trying to kick. Japan has cold turkey.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

https://www.kansaiscene.com/2012/07/japan-on-drugs/

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Drug use is a choice - the legal system should provide adequate reasons that deter others from engaging in illegal practices - money, fame, and rather lame apologies should not mitigate penalties delivered to offenders. But each society determines what they think will work.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Strangerland,

I love that on this site you are one of the few long term residents who seems settled and happy here, but it seems that sometimes your love for Japan includes more than a little side dish of willful denial.

How can you possibly live in Japan for decades the wealthy and connected don't necessarily get special treatment.

I'm not saying this is a purely Japanese phenomenon, far from it, but any analysis of criminal cases in the public eye demonstrates this clearly.

And this is not just restricted to the justice system. If you know how society here, works you know connections are everything. As you said above in your own post, different societies work in different ways.

There is a definite feeling here that someone who has made other positive contributions to society has earned the right to avoid severe punishment for themselves and their family and meting it out to them is practically rude.

You will remember Tetsuya Komura and his huge fraud case. You will remember Inagaki "member" from SMAP who was not given the usual 'yogisha' (suspect) suffix after an arrest.

Of course you will say this is all anecdotal, but c'mon man, you can love Japan without issuing misleading denials. People thinking of moving to Japan need to be informed what the society is like so they can make an informed choice over whether to live there or not.

My current feeling is that public information on Japan in English is so polluted denialist rhetoric that it does not allow people from overseas to exercise informed consent on what in means to live in Japanese society and what you can expect as a resident.

The justice system is two-tier. If you live in Japan and speak and read the language, denying this is like denying the rising of the sun.

Remember the journalist accused of sexual assault on the point of arrest at the airport before he was let through after a phone call from on high? The list of cases like this is endless. Why is Ghosn in custody but no-one from Takeda, Olympus, Toshiba, TEPCO...

You can refuse to bow before anything but hard data if you like, but one can go on and on with this, the weight of anecdotal evidence indicating bias in the Japanese justice system is quite staggering.

And where is this hard data going to come from anyway? Do you think the government keeps statistics on how well people are treated vs. how well connected they are?

How does one measure well-connecteness as a scientific variable.

Sometimes mate you just have to observe the world about you.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

if the law were enforced on this child 20 years ago. The child may have had a better life and we would not be reading this article.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Why would someone waste time trying to prove that when they can easily prove foreigners serving jail time on the first offense?

Ok, prove that then. And show to what degree it differs from Japanese people.

How can you possibly live in Japan for decades the wealthy and connected don't necessarily get special treatment.

I haven't claimed that anywhere. You seem to be addressing me for something you think I said, rather than for what I actually said.

You can refuse to bow before anything but hard data if you like

It's not so much refusing to bow before anything but hard data, but rather being a critical thinking, and not just accepting something because people say it. Many times things people repeat become an echo chamber, where it's said so often they believe it to be true. Like remember that bath salts case where the guy ate another guys' face off, then got killed by the police? Well he wasn't actually on bath salts, yet you hear people still making that claim regularly (I heard it on a podcast this week).

But that still doesn't change to the point that you wrote a whole long post responding to something I never actually said.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Ok, prove that then. And show to what degree it differs from Japanese people.

Easy! No one on this website would have statistical analysis, but if you do then prove to us that everyone gets a suspended sentence for the same crimes on the first offense. Like your anecdotal evidence, I have personally witnessed it. I have a friend who is Filipino and Japanese. Police came to his house and searched it based on tip from an associate who was caught with marijuana. The Japanese associate told the police of other people that he knew smoked MJ. They searched and found traces from an ashtray. He was sentenced to several months in jail plus a fine. That associate got a suspended sentence. You could argue because the associate was a narc, but you already said that everyone gets a suspended sentences. Why didn't my friend?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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