Motorist sentenced to eight years in prison for killing pedestrian, injuring others after taking drugs


The Tokyo District Court sentenced a 38-year-old man to eight years in prison on Friday for killing a pedestrian and injuring six others in Tokyo in 2014 after inhaling a so-called kiken (dangerous) drug.

Prosecutors had sought a 10-year term for Keiji Nagura on the charge of dangerous driving resulting in death and injury. The defense argued Nagura merely inhaled the drug to see how it tasted without expecting it to affect his driving.

Kiken drugs refer to drugs containing chemical agents that cause hallucinations and have stimulant properties. Japan banned their possession and use in April 2014.

Nagura rammed his car into pedestrians in Tokyo’s bustling Ikebukuro district on the evening of June 24, 2014, killing one and injuring six others, according to court documents.

Following accidents linked to what was then called dappo (loophole) drugs, the government stepped up efforts to make such drugs illegal.