• Kyodo


A Japanese businessman was shot dead by a gunman on a motorcycle while traveling in a commuter jeep with his Filipino girlfriend on the outskirts of Manila, police said Monday.

Yoshio Ichimura, 51, president of the Fil-Geron Philippine Private Nursing Home and Institution, was shot in the head Saturday in Calamba City, Laguna Province, about 50 km south of Manila.

He died on his way to a hospital.

Police said Ichimura was traveling in a commuter jeep with his girlfriend, the driver and several other passengers when the attack took place.

The jeep was stopping to let passengers get off at an intersection when the assailant shot Ichimura and drove off.

“It was a commuter jeepney and there were other passengers, more or less there were 10 of them inside,” Police Superintendent Edmund Zaide, chief of the Calamba police, said: “But nobody really noticed that a man had been shot. People thought that somebody just approached.”

Zaide said the assailant apparently targeted Ichimura and may have followed him and his girlfriend all the way from Cabuyao to the Calamba intersection.

“It was a very close range shot,” Zaide said.

Police found a spent shell from .45-caliber pistol at the crime scene.

Zaide said police have ordered a manhunt and started taking statements from Ichimura’s friends and colleagues.

But they have yet to find a witness to create a sketch of the killer or could they ascertain if the gunman was alone.

Ichimura’s business associate and friend, also a Japanese national, said the nursing home has been doing quite well.

Police quoted him as saying the nursing home has 70 clients, mostly Japanese, and plans to expand operations to accommodate more.

Ichimura has been in the Philippines for about 15 years, going back and forth to Japan, police said.

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