• Kyodo


A Vietnamese man was arrested Friday for allegedly obstructing police duties after escaping from an officer who attempted to handcuff him during a traffic stop the previous day.

Nguyen Van Hai, 31, was taken into custody after showing up at a convenience store in Kumagaya, Saitama Prefecture, after contacting a Vietnamese acquaintance in her 20s and saying he wished to turn himself in, the police said Saturday.

He had been on the run since around 11:15 a.m. Thursday, when he was stopped and questioned in the town of Oizumi in neighboring Gunma Prefecture after he was spotted driving a dented car, they said.

The officer tried to handcuff the suspect when he resisted interrogation, but he bit the officer’s arm and fled with the cuffs on one hand, the police said.

He still had them on when he was arrested Friday, the police said. Though he was wearing black pants and no shirt when he fled, he was fully clothed at the time of his arrest, prompting the police to speculate that someone sheltered him.

According to investigative sources, the suspect was on provisional release after overstaying his visa in 2015 and later applied for refugee status. He said he has been driving without a license.

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