Japan executes man over 2008 stabbing rampage | Death Penalty News

Tomohiro Kato was convicted of killing seven individuals in an assault on Tokyo’s common Akihabara district.

Japan has executed a person convicted of killing seven individuals in a stabbing rampage in Tokyo’s common Akihabara electronics district in 2008.

Justice Minister Yoshihisa Furukawa stated Tomohiro Kato had undertaken “meticulous preparation” for the assault and had proven a “robust intent” to kill.

“The loss of life sentence on this case was finalised by way of adequate deliberation in court docket,” he informed reporters.

“Primarily based on this reality, I authorized the execution after extraordinarily thorough scrutiny.”

The June 2008 attack, which additionally injured 10 individuals, started with Kato driving a truck right into a crowd. After stabbing a number of individuals, the then 25-year-old was arrested on the scene, telling police: “I got here to Akihabara to kill individuals. It didn’t matter who I’d kill.”

Police stated he documented his journey to Akihabara on web bulletin boards, typing messages on a cell phone from behind the wheel of the truck and complaining of his unstable job and loneliness.

Japan’s high court docket confirmed Kato’s loss of life sentence in 2015, saying there was “no grounds for leniency”. The assault was the nation’s worst mass killing in seven years.

Police arrest Tomohiro Kato, who is wearing a beige suit and glasses, on a street in Akhibara after he killed seven people in Tokyo.
Tomohiro Kato was arrested on the scene. He drove a truck into pedestrians earlier than occurring a stabbing spree [File: Jiji Press via AFP]

The son of a banker, Kato grew up in Aomori prefecture in Japan’s north, the place he graduated from a high highschool. He failed his college entrance exams and finally educated as a automobile mechanic, experiences stated.

Prosecutors stated Kato’s self-confidence had plummeted after a lady he had chatted with on-line abruptly stopped emailing him after he despatched her {a photograph} of himself.

His anger in opposition to most of the people grew when his on-line feedback, together with his plans for a killing spree, drew no response, prosecutors stated.

Whereas awaiting trial, Kato wrote to a 56-year-old taxi driver whom he injured within the stabbing spree, expressing his regret.

The victims “have been having fun with their lives, and so they had goals, shiny futures, heat households, lovers, pals and colleagues,” Kato wrote based on a duplicate printed within the Shukan Asahi weekly.

Kato’s execution is the primary in Japan this 12 months and comes after three prisoners were hanged in December 2021. These have been the primary executions within the nation in two years.

The usage of the loss of life penalty in Japan is shrouded in secrecy. These on loss of life row may solely discover out the sentence shall be carried out just a few hours earlier than or generally by no means, whereas their households are often solely notified afterwards, based on Amnesty Worldwide.

Amnesty, which is against the loss of life penalty in all instances, says the final pattern all over the world stays in direction of the abolition of capital punishment.