OSAKA (TR) – Following the arrest of a 28-year-old man in the killing of his girlfriend, whose corpse was found on his balcony last month, Osaka Prefectural Police have arrested his former wife for assisting in the crime, reports the Sankei Shimbun (Nov. 17).
On Thursday morning, police apprehended Tomoaki Komoto, 28, at a restaurant in Abeno Ward in the killing of Ayumi Hiraku, who is believed to have died at the age of 21 or 22.
Komoto admitted to killing her. “I strangled her to death,” the suspect told police. He is believed to have killed her in between December of 2010 and 2011, police said.
Also on Wednesday, police arrested Komoto’s former wife, 23-year-old Miku Yoneda, on suspicion of assisting in the cover-up of the crime.
Remains wrapped in a cloth
Prior to Thursday, Komoto’s whereabouts were not known. On October 26, an employee from a housing guarantee company alerted police about the discovery of the remains wrapped in a cloth on the balcony of the second-floor residence, located in the Showacho area of Abeno.
Three days before the discovery, the representative from the housing guarantee company entered the residence with police after rent had not been paid by Komoto for an extended period. During that visit, the balcony was not checked.
According to police, a note believed to have been written by Komoto and found inside read, “She asked me to strangle her.” It was dated 2010.
On same day that the body was discovered, Komoto allegedly sent a message via the smartphone application Line to Yoneda in which he said he was leaving the residence. “It’s no problem to throw away all of the belongings,” he reportedly wrote.
Yoneda denies the allegations against her, saying she knew nothing about Komoto’s alleged murder.
Police used a DNA analysis to confirm the identity of the corpse as belonging to Hiraku.
Missing in May
According to a previous report, the parents of Komoto said that they last spoke to their son on the telephone in March or April. He went missing in May, they said.
Yoneda began living the Komoto at the residence in the summer of 2014. She moved to a different residence in the ward this past March.
When police entered the premises the first time, they found garbage strewn everywhere.
In an interview conducted by Mainichi Broadcasting System (Nov. 16) before her arrest, Yoneda said that Komoto prohibited the opening of the window leading to the balcony in spite of a offensive smell that was present in the residence.
“If I open the window while watching anime, there might be complaints due about the noise,” Yoneda told the network.
She did notice translucent bags of garbage on the balcony.
“I could see inside that it was household rubbish,” she said. “I thought about throwing it away, but black water came out when I lifted it. The smell was worse than that of garbage.”