The Ecuadorean government has doubled the reward being offered for information leading to the arrest of the gang that fatally shot a Japanese honeymooner and left his wife seriously injured. On Saturday, the government offered a reward the equivalent of $100,000 but on Sunday doubled it to $200,000.
The couple, identified as Tetsuo Hitomi, 28, and his wife Mariko, 27, were married in Japan on Dec 22. They were in Guayaquil on their honeymoon when they were shot on Dec 28.
According to Japanese media reports, the couple had finished dinner at a restaurant and hailed a taxi to take them back to their hotel. Somewhere along the way, they were attacked by a gang of eight, NHK reported. Tetsuo was shot in the chest and died at the scene, while Mariko was shot in the abdomen and leg and remains in a serious but stable condition in hospital.
The taxi driver disappeared. Police said that many taxi drivers in the city belong to gangs and use their taxis to lure tourists to spots where they can be ambushed.
The Japanese embassy in Ecuador has warned tourists not to hail taxis on the street but instead ask the hotel concierge to make arrangements for them.
Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa was shown on TV on Saturday night saying that the crime reflected badly on the country and would negatively impact the tourism industry. He warned the killers that they will be brought to justice, NHK reported.© Japan Today