• Kyodo

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The Osaka District Court sentenced a man to 14 years in prison Friday for raping three women and sexually assaulting two others — two years more than prosecutors had requested.

The prosecutors’ recommended punishment was “too light,” presiding Judge Munehisa Sugita said in sentencing Naoto Nakajima, 34.

“The acts were to satisfy sexual desire, and that is very vicious and self-centered,” the judge said.

Between December and March in Osaka, Nakajima attacked the five women from behind and threatened to stab them if they resisted.

He also robbed his victims of 40,000 yen in cash and valuables.

Reporter in groping

Police have arrested a 44-year-old Asahi Shimbun reporter on suspicion of sexually assaulting a woman Thursday in Tokyo, Metropolitan Police Department officials said Friday.

Shinji Wakimoto, a reporter at the national daily’s local news department, allegedly pushed the 24-year-old woman down and touched her breast Thursday night near Meiji Shrine in Tokyo’s Shinjuku Ward.

A man who was near the scene grabbed Wakimoto and took him to police, the officials said, adding that the woman was not hurt.

The Asahi reporter told police that he spotted the woman at the Kokuritsu Kyogijo subway station near his home and followed her on his bicycle. He was under the influence of alcohol at the time, police said.

Asahi Shimbun’s Tokyo headquarters released a comment Friday, saying it will deal squarely with the incident.

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