crime

Parents return with ashes of honeymooner son murdered in Ecuador

18 Comments

The parents of a man murdered while on his honeymoon in Ecuador returned to Japan on Monday afternoon, bringing with them the ashes of their son.

Tetsuo Hitomi, 28, and his wife Mariko, 27, were married in Japan on Dec 22. They were in Guayaquil, en route to the Galapagos Islands, 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. Along the way, the taxi pulled over and they were attacked by a gang of eight. 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.

Reporters asked Hitomi's father for a comment as he and his wife came through the arrival lobby at Narita international airport late Monday. He said he had brought his son's ashes home, TV Asahi reported. He also thanked the Ecuadorean authorities for all they were doing to find his son's killers.

The Ecuadorean government has offered a reward the equivalent of $200,000 for information leading to the arrest of the killers. On Monday, Interior Minister Jose Serrano told a news conference that police are close to identifying the suspects after examining surveillance camera footage and speaking with witnesses, TV Asahi reported.

The taxi driver, who has not been found, is believed to be one of the gang. 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.

© Japan Today

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

18 Comments
Login to comment

I saw this on the TV news this morning. It was heartbreaking. The poor guy goes overseas on his honeymoon, full of life, and comes back in an urn.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

The taxi driver is believed to be one of the gang. 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.

Horrifying. That's not gonna help the tourism industry one bit.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

The taxi driver is believed to be one of the gang. 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.

And they can't find a way to deal with this?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Poor couple. RIP to Tetsuo, and I hope Mariko fully recovers, though the shock of what happened and the loss she suffered will take a lot longer. All this over what was undoubtedly money, and now they have a $200,000 price on their heads. Perhaps that'll help them see what an utter waste and shame their crime was, and hopefully it will lead to them being caught and severely punished.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

The world is a dangerous place. You should be as aware as possible about any country you plan to travel. Below is from the US State Department Travel site on Ecuador.

Secuestro Express” Taxi Assaults: Robberies and assaults against taxi passengers, known locally as “secuestro express” continue to present a significant safety concern, especially in Guayaquil and Manta, but also with increasing regularity in Quito. Shortly after the passenger enters a taxi, the vehicle is typically intercepted by armed accomplices of the driver, who threaten passengers with weapons, rob passengers of their personal belongings, and force victims to withdraw money from ATMs. Increasingly, victims have been beaten or raped during these incidents.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Well Folks, I'll let you know how BAD it is, I'm headed there in less than a month.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

R.I.P. to Tetsuo. I hope that all the killers will be arrested soon.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The pair had a quarrel with the taxi driver provided by the hotel. They were billed 20 dollars for a 2 dollar trip and had a quarrel according to the taxi driver of the hotel, the pair decided to hail a taxi from the streets...

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Better not to quarrel with the locals, taxi drivers etc..a mere $20 is NOT worth your life. RIP Tetsuo

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I sincerely hope these criminal groups get rounded up and captured. This seriously destroyed a family, and of course Ecuador as a whole will be losing tourists more and more unless they focus on cleaning up organized criminal activities like this.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Money talks and believe me the wolves will turn against one another and these criminals will be found!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Better not to quarrel with the locals, taxi drivers etc..a mere $20 is NOT worth your life. RIP Tetsuo

Average normal person will definitely quarrel with a taxi after being overcharged by a great deal.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

May Tetsuo rest in peace. There is nothing on Mariko's status? I hope she can endure all of this heartbreak.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Security Minister in Ecuador said to japanese press that this kind of assault is "atypical", which is a lie. I live in this country and assaults and deliquency have raised in the late 6 years. Poor guy and wish his wife fully recovers.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Rest in peace young man.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

They had a quarrel and rightly so -- maybe they shouldn't have argued but who wouldn't have? So sick of hearing innocents getting ripped off, raped, murdered in these third world dumps, when they're providing income to locals they wouldn't normally receive. My heart goes out to the son's parents and to his wife, what an utterly heartbreaking story.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Anywhere you travel, always use common sense..I was in Ecuador with my family a little while ago, and we hired a tour company which gave us a personal guide and car for our stay...we decided on it after doing the research about the country...it costed a bit more than going on your own, but it is all about peace of mind...unfortunately, the world is a dangerous place, everywhere, if you don't watch your back...RIP young man...and peace to his family.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@ Elbudo Mexicano Better not to quarrel with the locals, taxi drivers etc..a mere $20 is NOT worth your life. RIP Tetsuo

Great is that what they do in Mexico just except the bribe another 3rd world corrupt country!!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites