Police said Sunday that they will formally charge Tatsuya Ichihashi, under arrest for allegedly abandoning the body of Lindsay Hawker in 2007, on suspicion of murdering the British woman, on Wednesday, the expiration date of his legal detention period.
Since his arrest on Nov 10, Ichihashi, 30, has only been held on a technical charge of abandoning Hawker's body in a sand-filled bathtub on the balcony of his apartment in the Chiba Prefecture city of Ichikawa.
Chiba prefectural police said the basis for the murder charge will be that no one other than Ichihashi and Hawker were seen entering his apartment from the time the two of them went there until the police discovered her body the following day. CCTV footage in the elevator shows Ichihashi and Hawker going up to his apartment at about 10 a.m. on March 25, 2007, after they had earlier left a nearby coffee shop.
Ichihashi has remained silent about the case, refusing to talk even about the charge of abandonment of Hawker's body, but investigators say there is enough circumstantial evidence as well as the results of analysis of items found in Ichihashi's apartment.
Hawker, who sustained injuries to her face and other parts of her body, was strangled to death.© News reports