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Court sentences couple for murdering disabled son

Date Posted: 2010-03-11

A Kin Town couple that murdered their seriously disabled son by drowning him in waters off Nago City has been sentenced to prison terms by the Naha District Court.

Hatsuko Kinjo, 62, was given a five-year jail term, while her husband, 67-year-old Yoshimasa Kinjo, was sentenced to a 4 year prison term. Prosecutors had asked the court for eight-year jail terms, while defense attorneys pleased for suspended sentences.

The court ruled there was no reason for the Kinjo couple to take their son to the ocean and drown him, although it did concede the husband and wife had anxieties over caring for their disabled son. The couple had initially planned to murder their son, then commit suicide, but backed out after the son was dead.

Officials say the couple has expressed regrets about killing their son. The two were convicted by a jury trial, a system introduced into Japan only a year ago.

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