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Videotaping interrogations of criminal suspects could have prevented a man recently effectively exonerated by a DNA test from being convicted of murder, but the result of his trial might not have been any different if lay judges had been on the bench, legal professionals said Tuesday.

Toshikazu Sugaya spent 17 years in prison after being convicted of kidnapping and murdering a 4-year-old girl in Ashikaga, Tochigi Prefecture, in 1990 but was freed this month after recent tests indicated his DNA did not match traces found on the victim’s clothing. Initial tests had led to his getting a life sentence.

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