Kyoto’s ‘black widow’ admits murdering husband: police sources


The Kyoto Prefecture woman whom the media has dubbed “the black widow” has admitted to murdering her most recent husband, sources close to the investigation said Friday.

Chisako Kakehi, 68, whose six partners since 2006 have all died, was charged Wednesday with murdering 75-year-old Isao Kakehi last Dec. 28 by giving him a fatal dose of cyanide in their home in the city of Muko.

Chisako Kakehi had adamantly denied the allegations after she was arrested Nov. 19, but the sources said several days before she was indicted Wednesday she told investigators “I did it” and began to explain the circumstances of Isao Kakehi’s death.

Since 2006, she had married or was in a common-law marriage with six men, and inherited a total of around ¥1 billion after their deaths, according to the investigation so far.

Police in neighboring Osaka Prefecture are investigating the death of another of the men, who was from the city of Kaizuka and who died in March 2012 at age 71. Cyanide compounds were later detected in samples of his blood.

  • Tim Johnston

    Merry christmas

  • MM333

    Does the Japan Times not have ethical or editorial guidelines that prevent the publication of alleged confessions from unofficial police sources? Particularly where the suspect has “adamantly denied the allegations after she was arrested”.

    What if the source who leaked this information is the person attempting to extract a confession? What if the police are now saying ‘look, even the Japan Times has already printing that you have confessed, why don’t you just confess already’?

    This type of reporting would be illegal in many countries for very good reasons. While it might not be in Japan, I would expect the Japan Times to uphold a higher standard.

    • Firas Kraïem

      “This type of reporting would be illegal in many countries” Please name such countries.

      • MM333

        Andorra, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Caribbean (majority of
        countries), Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France,
        Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Israel,
        Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta,
        Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, San
        Marino, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine,
        United Kingdom. (There are likely others)

        News organisations in
        these countries often disable comments when they report arrests
        precisely to prevent people from spreading unverifiable uncorroborated
        rumours that could prejudice a jury or lay judge.

        about an alleged confession from unofficial unidentified police sources is
        probably the most egregious example of sub judice that one can imagine.
        The Japan Times clearly could not have contacted this woman in police custody. They have absolutely no way of knowing if this story is true or not. The fact that the woman has no way of contacting the media to deny these rumours even if she
        desperately wanted to makes printing this story ethically questionable. I hope none of the lay judges hearing this case
        have read this article if this rumoured confession turns out to be false. Shame on the Japan Times for failing to wait a few days for official confirmation (assuming this story is even true).