AKITA (Kyodo) A woman convicted of killing her daughter and a neighbor boy in Akita Prefecture in 2006 decided to appeal her life term to the Supreme Court on Wednesday, surprising her defense team, her lawyers said.

The move at the Akita branch of the Sendai High Court came after prosecutors decided not to pursue the gallows for Suzuka Hatakeyama, 36. Her counsel was seeking a regular prison term and had decided not to appeal the life term.

But after meeting with her Wednesday — the deadline for the appeal — her lawyers appealed the life term.

“I would hate being sentenced to life imprisonment the most because I don’t know how long I can endure,” Hatakeyama told a clinical psychotherapist who spoke with her last fall. Prisoners with life terms can eventually be paroled.

“I feel my heart break even thinking about life imprisonment. I can’t bear a long imprisonment,” she was quoted as saying.

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