The Tokyo Reporter

Filipino suspect in slaying of female Ibaraki student said crime ‘just happened’

Ibaraki police on Saturday arrested Lampano Jerico Mori, 35, for allegedly murdering Misato Harada, 21, in 2004

IBARAKI (TR) – Investigative sources with the Ibaraki Prefectural Police revealed on Tuesday that a male Filipino national in custody in the killing of a woman more than one decade ago claims the crime was one of happenstance, reports TBS News (Sept. 5).

In the early morning hours of January 31, 2004, Lampano Jerico Mori, a 35-year-old factory worker living in Gifu Prefecture, and two male accomplices allegedly raped Misato Harada, 21, and strangled her to death.

The suspects and the victim were not acquainted. According to the investigative sources, Mori has said that prior to the incident he and his accomplices were out playing around. “[Harada] came along, and the crime just happened,” the suspect was quoted.

Body found along river

According to a previous report, Mori was living in Ibaraki at the time of the crime. The victim was a second-year student in the department of agriculture at Ibaraki University.

At around midnight on January 31, 2004, Harade exited her apartment, located in the town of Ami, Ibaraki, leaving word with an acquaintance that she was going out. About nine hours later, her nude body was found 6 kilometers away on a bank of the Seimei River in the village of Miho.

Listed with Interpol

Police arrested Mori on Saturday after the results of a DNA analysis of material taken from the body of Harada proved to be a match for the suspect.

On Monday, the accomplices, both Filipino men, aged 31 and 33, were placed on an international wanted list with Interpol. They both left Japan in 2007.

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