The Fukuoka District Court on Tuesday sentenced a 33-year-old unemployed man to 12 years in prison for stalking and murdering a former girlfriend last July.
Tsuyoshi Motoyama, of no fixed address, committed an “extremely cruel crime,” presiding Judge Nobuhiko Nakaya said.
Motoyama fatally stabbed Naomi Daicho, 38, on July 15 after getting into her car when it stopped on a road in Fukuoka city, the ruling said.
He stabbed her more than 20 times as her 10-year-old daughter watched, according to the ruling.
Prosecutors had demanded 13 years in prison. They told the court that Motoyama persistently stalked his victim after their relationship deteriorated earlier that year.
Motoyama made several hundred phone calls to Daicho’s home and mobile phone, according to prosecutors. They said he forced her to accompany him around the city at night and hid for several days in the roof of her home.
Motoyama had denied intent to kill, while his counsel had argued that he was mentally deficient and thus could only be partially held responsible for his actions.
The judge concluded he was able to bear responsibility for his actions.