• Kyodo, Staff Report


A suspect in a ¥10 million fraud case is only 18 years old, it was learned on Wednesday.

Chiba Prefectural Police earlier posted images of the teen on its website and on Twitter, media reports said, but officers deleted the images after they arrested the boy, who is a resident of Sendai.

The law bans the publication of the names and faces of suspects who are minors.

On Feb. 19, police released images from a covert camera of an individual who allegedly received ¥10 million from a victim after spinning a tale that the man’s son had suffered losses from a stock investment. The images, which were recorded near a train station and inside a taxi, were also distributed to the press.

The police said their research had led them to believe the suspect was in his 20s. They released the images in a bid to solicit help from the public, considering the size of the fraud and the fact that many similar cases have been taking place.

On Tuesday the Sendai youth went to the police with his mother and turned himself in. Officers quoted him saying he learned he was wanted when he saw that his image had been released.

The boy was arrested on suspicion of conducting fraud in conspiracy with his friends by calling a man, identified only as a company employee, pretending to be his son and asking for money, police said.

The hidden-camera images show the boy receiving a paper bag from the man in front of Hokuso Railway’s Chiba New Town Chuo Station in Inzai, Chiba Prefecture, and getting into a taxi.

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