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Murderer sentenced to long prison term

Date Posted: 2010-04-01

A 45-year-old businessman has been sentenced to 22 years in prison for his role in murdering a local man, then hacking his body into pieces and burying them.

The Naha District Court sentenced the Fukuoka businessman, despite Seiko Hirakata’s repeated pleas of innocence. Chief judge Hiroyuki Yoshii told Hirakata “You are the one who plotted together with the other two people, and you are the principal offender because you wanted money from the victim. You had been planning the killing for a long time, and that’s why even though the victim was killed you kept trying to get money, and that’s enough to know you’re guilty.”

The judge told Hirakata “You are not the ringleader, and you didn’t kill Mitsuo Nitta, and you helped the investigation support the truth, so you sin has been reduced in sentencing.” Mitsuo Nitta, from Chatan Town, was murdered in December 2008, and his body mutilated. Hirakata’s attorney argued for a lower sentence, noting “He persisted in pleading his innocence, never took part in the murder, didn’t abandon the body or destroy it even.”

Judge Yoshii says “there are two more persons who did murder Nitta, and for them, the trial is yet to come.

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