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Theft suspect arrested in Ogimi murder case

Date Posted: 2009-02-12

A Japanese mainlander already arrested and charged with theft in the case of a man found murdered and dismembered in Ogimi Village in December has been formally charged with that slaying.

Seikou Hirakata, who had been arrested last month along with two other people believed to have tapped the dead man’s bank accounts using ATM cards, was arrested by Okinawa Prefecture Police. Police say he and his colleagues had murdered Mitsuo Nitta after some financial dealings apparently went awry. The 44-year-old Hirakata had been released from custody after the theft charges were announced, and was rearrested this week.

Nitta’s mutilated body was found in six pieces, wrapped in plastic and buried in a Taminato area farmyard in mid-December. Police say Hirakata’s fingerprints led to the lastest charges. Earlier, he and another man, plus a woman, had taken money from Nitta’s account, an amount police say was in the millions of yen.

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