Japanese death-row convict seeking retrial dies

Tokyo, Oct 5 (IANS) An 89-year-old Japanese death-row inmate convicted of fatally poisoning five people in 1961 has died while seeking a retrial, the media reported.

Justice ministry officials said Masaru Okunishi died of pneumonia in a medical prison in a Tokyo suburb on Sunday. He was transferred from the Nagoya prison in 2012 after his health deteriorated.

His defence lawyers had filed a ninth petition for a retrial in May.

Okunishi was sentenced to death for killing five women with pesticide-laced wine at a community gathering in Nabari, Mie prefecture, in 1961.

A district court initially found him not guilty, but a high court reversed the ruling. His death sentence was finalised by the Supreme Court in 1972.

Okunishi consistently declared his innocence at his trial and repeatedly sought a retrial.

In 2005, the Nagoya High Court granted a retrial, saying he could not be convicted as the perpetrator.

A judge in a different section of the same court annulled the decision the next year. But the Supreme Court overturned the decision and ordered the court to decide again whether to retry him.

The top court in 2013 finalised a decision not to open a retrial.

Leave a Reply

Please enter your comment!

The opinions, views, and thoughts expressed by the readers and those providing comments are theirs alone and do not reflect the opinions of www.mangalorean.com or any employee thereof. www.mangalorean.com is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the readers. Responsibility for the content of comments belongs to the commenter alone.  

We request the readers to refrain from posting defamatory, inflammatory comments and not indulge in personal attacks. However, it is obligatory on the part of www.mangalorean.com to provide the IP address and other details of senders of such comments to the concerned authorities upon their request.

Hence we request all our readers to help us to delete comments that do not follow these guidelines by informing us at  info@mangalorean.com. Lets work together to keep the comments clean and worthful, thereby make a difference in the community.

Please enter your name here