National / Crime & Legal

Chile's top court rebuffs French request to detain suspect in Japanese student's disappearance


Chile’s Supreme Court on Friday rejected a request by French prosecutors to detain a Chilean man suspected of involvement in the disappearance of a Japanese university student in France.

French prosecutors have put Nicolas Zepeda Contreras, 26, on the international wanted list for allegedly killing Narumi Kurosaki, 21, who was last seen in Besancon, eastern France, in early December.

In Chile, the Supreme Court decides whether to detain a suspect wanted in a foreign criminal investigation. It has prohibited Zepeda from leaving the country for two months.

Prosecutors say Zepeda was Kuroda’s former boyfriend and fled to Chile. They requested that the suspect be detained and turned over.

The Supreme Court justice who made the decision cited lack of sufficient evidence, indicating the French prosecutors will need to provide more evidence to justify the suspect’s extradition.

Although the body of Kurosaki, who was attending the University of Tsukuba in Ibaraki Prefecture, has not been found, prosecutors said they have sufficient evidence to suspect murder.

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