crime

Interrogation recording in serious cases becomes mandatory in Japan

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This SHOULD have been done a long, long, long, time ago. Now we'll see the prosecutors and police find some other way to coorce their suspected "suspects"!

I have a hard time believing that it will be easy to teach these dogs new tricks!

13 ( +14 / -1 )

What level of seriousness determines whether an interrogation is recorded? I'm of the opinion all interrogations should be.

16 ( +17 / -1 )

What level of seriousness determines whether an interrogation is recorded? I'm of the opinion all interrogations should be.

Did you read the article perhaps?

Under the revisions, the entire process of interrogations must be recorded in cases subject to lay judge trials, including murder and robbery resulting in death, as well as cases investigated by special prosecutor squads, which often deal with corporate crimes and corruption.

Can't get much more specific than that!

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Fair enough. Still though... I'm of the opinion it should be all interrogations.

15 ( +15 / -0 )

as well as cases investigated by special prosecutor squads, which often deal with corporate crimes and corruption

I guess they'll have to START recording Carlos' interrogations now.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

But cases subject to the entire interrogation being recorded account for only about 3 percent of the total and the introduction of the measure to improve transparency will be limited to the questioning of suspects who have been arrested or detained, not those who come under investigation on a voluntary basis.

When those people being questioned they have no clue is it voluntary or not, so investigator can choose which part they want to record.

If they really care about uncovering the truth not only part of confession from suspect, all session should be being recorded. So do they care?

obliged to record interrogations of suspects in serious criminal cases as legal revisions to criminal proceedings

These days the cost of storage media it's so cheap, so it's become of matter of willingness whether they want to do it or not.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

The police will hate this. How are they going to force confessions now?

11 ( +12 / -1 )

This is good. And I think it’s an example of how things work in Japan sometimes at a very slow pace. Twenty years ago, interrogations didn’t exist in Japan in any capacity. Then they introduced them. At the time, I criticized the implementation, with them not being mandatory, and/or partial. But here we are now, and they’ve made them mandatory for serious cases. It’s a lesson even for me, that this is a conservative nation that can sometimes move slower than I like, but does move forward over time.

This is a good step.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Not that I have any trouble with the law, but knowing how the Japanese injustice system works I’d be demanding any interviews be recorded.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Its a step in the right direction, but should be expanded to all crimes since the police use aggressive interrogation techniques not just in murder cases.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

what proportion of cases are tried before lay judges I wonder.... anybody know?

and in any case, why not just record everything? I also wonder.....

5 ( +5 / -0 )

First of all, JT, the term should be ‘suspect interviews’, interrogation has a different connotation to it.

Second, ALL interviews should be recorded whether it’s for a simple shoplifting to a homicide, doesn’t matter.

Third, legal representation should be offered in all cases and up to the interviewee if they want a lawyer present or not.

That in my mind would be a fairer and more transparent/accountable system for Japan.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

It’s a start and like with all first time rollouts there’ll be some bugs and once that’s ironed all out things should progress rather smoothly.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

In addition to revisions to the Code of Criminal Procedure, a revised wiretapping law enacted in May 2016 also became fully effective Saturday, enabling investigators to wiretap phones and emails to probe organized and other crimes without the presence of telecommunications carrier personnel.

This law violates the constitution. Without telecoms personnel to keep an eye on them the police will be able to do what they like.

Also, all interactions with the police and prosecutors should be recorded. If any recordings go "missing" the prosecution's case should be automatically thrown out.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I guess they'll have to START recording Carlos' interrogations now.

As his first lawyer said and this article also suggests that Carlos's interrogations are recorded from the beginning.

Have you ever heard Carlos or his wife complainning it was not recorded?  If they are quiet about it, then it is recorded.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

But cases subject to the entire interrogation being recorded account for only about 3 percent of the total and the introduction of the measure to improve transparency will be limited to the questioning of suspects who have been arrested or detained, not those who come under investigation on a voluntary basis.

Basically meaningless!!

3%!!!!

And you know that police and prosecutors will know how to game the system!!

If Japan was serious, they would mandate recording of ALL interrogations and questioning!! Of all suspects / interviewees, regardless!!!

But, of course, they haven't!!

Window dressing!!!

7 ( +8 / -1 )

The police will hate this. How are they going to force confessions now?

its easy because only 3 % of all cases will be recorded, and they'll just ask to interrogate you voluntarily instead of arresting you first.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

3%!!!!

and this is exactly why Japan continues to get left in the past, they just can't do any meaningful changes where its drastically needed, just superficial changes to make it look game changing. same shite sandwich but using different bread

3 ( +3 / -0 )

If they are quiet about it, then it is recorded.

but they haven't been quiet he and his lawyer have complained about the force confession from day 1, same questions over and over again until they confess, this is what recording of interrogations is meant to prevent, yet prosecutors continue to use forced confessions as the basis of their prosecutions instead of actually presenting irrefutable evidence to a judge or jury

3 ( +3 / -0 )

There are many changes needed to the criminal procedures such as being held for up to 23 days without charge and not being allowed to have a lawyer during the interrogation although interpreters are used when needed.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Has someone worked out a good argument for preventing lawyers to attend interviews?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Every little helps I suppose but agree it should be all interviews (it is indicative that even a reporter calls them “interrogations”). And the other blatant injustices of the system are ignored, but that is the prerogative of a sovereign state, so it is down to the Japanese people to bring about change.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Wonder what would happen if japan (and the US) made it illegal for cops to lie about evidence they don't have so to persuade confession...

2 ( +2 / -0 )

A small step in the right direction, but Japan still has a long way to go, to having a 21 st century, democratic, fair, accountable justice system.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Has someone worked out a good argument for preventing lawyers to attend interviews?

Efficiency and precision. With a lawyer present, realistically you can't get anything useful out of the suspect. Which means an increased reliance on objective evidence (which is good) but also circumstantial evidence which now has to be upgraded into probative evidence (not so good).

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Efficiency and precision. 

The OP was asking for a good reason, not excuses used by the police and prosecutors.

Lawyers exist because it's unreasonable to expect lay people to fully understand the law and to be able to safeguard their rights against the government.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Chip Star:

All citizens should be taught basic laws and rights in school. Still need lawyers, but everyone should know what their rights are.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Why not mandatory is ALL cases? What are the police trying to hide?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Requiring that interviews be recorded is not the same as requiring that those recordings be turned over to the defense. Prosecutors are still not required by law to turn over any and all exculpable evidence to the defense.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

wtfjapanJune 2  11:39 am JST

The police will hate this. How are they going to force confessions now?

its easy because only 3 % of all cases will be recorded, and they'll just ask to interrogate you voluntarily instead of arresting you first.

If you're not under arrest is there anything stopping you recording the conversation yourself?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If you are in custody, they will have taken any devices you had. If on the street and just talking, then you can record all you want.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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