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For the first time since the Penal Code took effect in 1907, the Justice Ministry is compiling a package of amendments to Japan’s sex crime statutes that, if passed, will be the first major shake-up of those laws in more than a century.

From redefining rape to increasing the minimum sentence for that crime, the intended revision is largely hailed as a welcome development, if long-overdue, although critics say there is room for improvement.

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