• Kyodo


A former mobster was sentenced Monday to 20 years in prison and an accomplice got 15 years for robbing a bank cash van at gunpoint last August and seriously wounding two security guards.

Convicted in the Yokohama District Court were former gangster Hiroyuki Kobayashi, 42, and Takashi Kawada, 28, who is described as being unemployed.

Presiding Judge Hiroshi Yamura called their crime “very antisocial.”

A total of six bullets hit the two guards, who are still unable to resume work, Yamura said.

Kobayashi and Kawada allegedly conspired with Susumu Sugiyama, 55, an unemployed man considered by prosecutors to be the main culprit during the robbery.

The trio shot the guards in the parking lot of the Isezakicho branch of Shonan Shinkin Bank in Naka Ward, Yokohama, and stole 10 million yen in cash from the van, the court ruled.

Prosecutors had demanded 20 years for Kobayashi and 18 years for Kawada.

A ruling will be handed down in Sugiyama’s case March 19. Prosecutors have demanded a life sentence.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.