• Kyodo

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A life sentence was upheld Thursday for a man convicted in the 1997 slaying of two Japanese-Brazilians.

Yoshizumi Ishikawa, 31, who had pleaded not guilty to charges of murdering Carlos Alberto Oseko and Fuzifaru Massyo Fujiharu, both 30, and dumping their bodies, was convicted and sentenced Aug. 2, 2001, by the Fukui District Court, based on circumstantial evidence.

In upholding the sentence in the appellate trial sought by both prosecutors and Ishikawa, Judge Tsutomu Yasue of the Nagoya High Court ruled that the circumstantial evidence, which included Ishikawa’s destruction of real evidence, proves his guilt.

The lower court found Ishikawa, owner of a manpower agency, guilty of stabbing the two at an apartment he owned in the city of Fukui on April 21, 1997, and dumping their bodies in a forest in Maruoka, Fukui Prefecture.

Oseko, a factory worker, and Fujiharu, a woman who lived with him in the apartment, had put up 3 million yen to help establish Ishikawa’s company and were employed at the firm.

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