• Kyodo

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An unemployed couple in their 40s pleaded guilty Monday to murdering and robbing the woman’s 67-year-old former lover.

Sanae Ito, 44, of Marumori, Miyagi Prefecture, admitted to the Saitama District Court that they killed Minoru Hakuda, 67, an electrical engineer, in November 2012. She denied a separate charge that she robbed the victim.

Her boyfriend, Hiromitsu Kikuchi, 49, of Sendai, admitted to all of the charges against him.

The Saitama Prefecture Police said Ito met Hakuda through a matchmaking service in 2006 and they began a relationship.

Prosecutors say Ito borrowed more than ¥10 million from Hakuda to fund her extravagant lifestyle, including buying jewelry.

Then in 2009, Ito started dating Kikuchi. According to the police, she killed Hakuda to avoid having to repay the loan. Ito and Kikuchi allegedly drugged him with sleeping pills at his home in Gyoda, Saitama Prefecture, then stabbed him with a butcher’s knife.

The prosecution said the couple then robbed the man of about ¥30,000 in cash.