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Woman, among 31 detainees released from police custody following tsunami, rearrested

15 Comments

A woman who was among 31 detainees who were released from police custody in Fukushima following the earthquake and tsunami which struck the city on March 11, has been rearrested over a subsequent crime, police said Tuesday.

The woman, who has been identified as Junko Yamaguchi, 38, was originally arrested on suspicion of theft. However, following the disaster, the District Public Prosecutor's Office deemed that it did not possess the manpower to thoroughly investigate the cases of 31 detainees, including Yamaguchi, and released them without charging them.

Yamaguchi was released on March 14 and rearrested on April 2 when she allegedly illegally entered the offices of a Fukushima convenience store.

The District Public Prosecutor's office has declined to comment on the case. However, Justice Minister Satsuki Eda has questioned whether, in light of the event, releasing the detainees was the correct course of action. Eda said Tuesday he will raise the issue with the District Public Prosecutor's Office.

© Compiled from news reports

©2024 GPlusMedia Inc.

15 Comments
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Maybe the woman was starving?Is it better to starve to death or to get food from a ravaged kobini? What would you do?

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People don't understand the Japanese judicial process here. There's no decision to be made. They didn't have the manpower to investigate, meaning they legally could not hold them anyways. You get 30 days to build your case (you have to go to a judge twice to get 10 day extensions), and then you either must indict or you let them go. I doubt they had the manpower to even obtain the extension, let alone continue interrogating 30 people for 30 days. Do the math.

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here in christchurch we have had two big quakes. one in september and one in february. on both occasions the same 4 people were arrested for thieving in the damaged area of the city centre, the day after the quakes.

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Sheriff's reading things into the article that aren't there, and elbudamexicano has mixed up his phrases. "Those people aren't the SHARPEST tools in the shed", or, "The lights are on, but no one's home".

It just goes to show that there are people who have a way with words and people who... er... have not a way. ;-)

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Sherrif I disagree they are not saying that they will let criminals who commit crimes AFTER this type of tragedy go, it is a case of non-violent- non-dangerous people who were ALREADY incarcerated, not those committing the extremely heinous act of looting at times of tragedy that were let go. I don't believe this would lead anyone to think "oh they won't do anything if I loot"

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Most people who end up in jail, well, are not the brightest tools in the shed right??

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If the evidence can't be found or accusers are no longer alive, then she should be released for lack of evidence or witnesses. But, I guess she just exemplifies that she was just a bad apple since she got caught doing what she probably did the first time.

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It sound entirely correct to me to release suspects arrested on petty crime charges during a massive emergency, when the police has more important things to do. And I would think this Eda character could find something more useful to do than to create more paperwork at this time.

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She got a "get out of jail free" card...and wasted it!

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I can't say that I think it's 'right' to have released detainees due to the earthquake and subsequent tsunami; I think it depends entirely on the crime, which of course requires investigation. Petty theft? I can see it. And if she was rearrested for simply entering a place prohibited to the public, then it was meant to be.

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Releasing them was the wrong way to go. It sends out the message that people who loot after a disaster will be released without being charged.

Er, sheriff, she had been jailed prior to March 11, so it could not possible have been for looting.

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Releasing them was the wrong way to go. It sends out the message that people who loot after a disaster will be released without being charged.

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The police were following established precedence. She violated the "honor system" that dates back to feudal times, when prisoners in the city jail were released during major fires.

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@ ResortDiver

Considering the circumstances, I would agree

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The decision that releasing the detainees who were not supposed to be serious ciriminals was right in the light of the critical situation at the time. This woman's case is not anybody's fault except this woman.

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