KOBE – Police will Wednesday serve new arrest warrants on seven people already in custody in connection with a series of deaths in the city of Amagasaki, Hyogo Prefecture, sources said Tuesday.
The Hyogo police obtained the warrants Tuesday for Miyoko Sumida, 64, and six of her relatives on charges of detaining and murdering distant relative Jiro Hashimoto, 53, last year.
The seven are suspected of holding Hashimoto captive without food or water for four days in July 2011. The police believe Sumida intentionally made sure Hashimoto died from neglect.
The seven plus another Sumida relative were indicted last week for illegally disposing of Hashimoto’s corpse, which was found in a concrete-filled drum salvaged from the sea in October based in information provided by some of the suspects.
The police have so far established that six people, including Hashimoto, who were linked to Sumida have died under mysterious circumstances. Before Hashimoto’s corpse was found, police had tied Sumida to the discovery of another body in a concrete-filled drum, and she is suspected in the as-yet-unresolved deaths of others whose decomposed corpses were found buried under an Amagasaki house.