• Kyodo


A former inmate of Nagoya Prison filed a complaint Friday against several guards alleging he was abused by being held in restraining devices, his supporters said.

Five guards at the prison have already been arrested for allegedly abusing inmates in a similar manner.

According to the complaint, the 37-year-old man was held at the prison between March 2000 and July this year. He was bound with leather manacles to a leather belt and placed in solitary confinement twice during that period, causing internal bleeding, it says.

Investigators at the Nagoya District Public Prosecutor’s Office have yet to decide whether to officially accept the complaint, a source said.

The Center for Prisoners’ Rights, a nonprofit organization that supports inmates, said the mistreatment was apparently provoked by a petition the prisoner sent to the justice minister in October 2000.

The petition, in which the inmate demanded better treatment at the prison, was sent in accordance with a petition clause stipulated in the Prison Law. The Justice Ministry refused to accept the petition late last year.

“The prison has acted maliciously because it declined to inform the prisoner who filed the complaint of the address of the Center for Prisoners’ Rights, although we asked it to do so,” a group official said.

Police arrested five guards Nov. 8 on suspicion of attacking a 30-year-old male inmate Sept. 25 when they put him in solitary confinement wearing similar manacles.

The guards allegedly secured the device so tightly around the stomach of an agitated inmate that he sustained injuries and suffered internal bleeding that required hospitalization.

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