TOKYO (TR) – The Tokyo District Court on Monday sentenced a 42-year-old man to a prison term of nearly five years over the severing of a thumb of his former ballet instructor at a studio in Shibuya Ward last year, reports Nippon News Network (Mar. 27).
Presiding judge Akira Sugawara described the severing of the thumb of the female instructor, aged in her 20s, by Hiroaki Hashimoto as “systematic” and “cruel” in handing down a prison term of four years and six months.
The prosecution had sought a six-year term.
On July 6, Hashimoto strangled the victim in the studio until she was rendered unconscious. He then used a hammer and chisel to commit the act, according to a previous report.
During a hearing, Hashimoto indicated that the victim had mocked him during a class. “I felt stupid and I could not forgive her,” the defendant said, according to Fuji News Network (Mar. 27).
Judge Sugawara added that even though the victim’s thumb had been re-attached she will be reminded of the incident each time she looks at it for the rest of her life. “While in prison, think about how you will redeem yourself, and do not forget for the rest of your life,” the judge told the defendant.