TOKYO (TR) – The Tokyo District Court last week sentenced two women to between three and four years in prison for the murder last year of their sister, 45-year-old Hiroko Egawa, reports Nippon News Network (Feb. 24).
In handing down the four-year term to Etsuko Egawa, a 43-year-old employee in the real estate industry, presiding judge Hiroaki Saito took into account the fact that she had been taking care of Hiroko, who was suffering from depression, for an extended period.
“Given the terrible things she said, it is possible to be partially sympathetic,” said Saito. “But you proposed the idea of murder, and were the mastermind of the crime from start to finish.”
Saito handed down a sentence of three years to Mayumi Kosugiyama, 37, since she did not stop the crime. “You bear heavy responsibility,” said the judge.
On May 3 of last year, Egawa and Kosugiyama stabbed their sister in the head with a fruit knife and strangled her with a belt inside the family’s residence in the Kohoku area of Adachi Ward.
News reports indicated that the suspects had attempted to make the death appear to be a suicide. Tabloid reports speculated that the sisters had been fighting over an inheritance.
The prosecution had sought terms of six years and four years for Egawa and Kosugiyama, respectively.