• Kyodo


A 25-year-old man in Fuji, Shizuoka Prefecture, was sentenced Thursday to 10 years in prison for beating his 5-year-old daughter to death and seriously injuring her twin sister in June 2000.

The Numazu branch of the Shizuoka District Court handed down the ruling to Naoki Aizawa, a gardener, in line with the prosecutors’ demand.

Judge Hiroshi Masuyama said the beating of the twins was persistent and vicious, and that it is unacceptable to “take out one’s own complaints and irritation on children who cannot resist such violence.”

Aizawa earlier told investigators he took drugs after committing the crime to try to kill himself, but the judge said he had used the stimulants simply to escape reality.

According to the ruling, Aizawa punched and smashed an empty can into the face of his daughter Mizuki on June 27 at their home. He also beat Mizuki’s twin sister the same day, dropping her on the kitchen floor and fracturing bones in her arms.

Two days later, he beat Mizuki to death by punching and kicking her in the head and dropping her on the floor. She died of subdural hemorrhage, according to the ruling.

Brazilian acquitted

NAGANO (Kyodo) A 24-year-old Brazilian of Japanese descent was acquitted Thursday of charges that he beat his three-year-old daughter to death in June.

The Matsumoto branch of the Nagano District Court ruled that a confession obtained from Roberto Hideo de Freitas Tokunaga during the police investigation was unreliable.

Tokunaga was arrested and indicted over his daughter’s death from external injuries after he allegedly beat her at their home in Hotaka in the prefecture.

During his trial, the defendant pleaded not guilty, maintaining that his wife abused the child and he had confessed to it instead.

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