Last Friday, Chiba Prefectural Police found the body of Manae Noguchi, 18, buried on a farm in Narita City. She had been missing for nearly one week.
According to investigators, her mouth had been wrapped with tape and her arms tied. Police have arrested Shota Nakano and Yuki Ide, both of whom are 20 years of age, and two minors for the abduction and confinement of Noguchi.
The grisly discovery, says evening tabloid Nikkan Gendai (April 28), is the tragic ending to a troubled life. The girl, a runaway from Funabashi City, had bounced around as an employee at a number of soapland bathhouses in Chiba City’s Sakaecho district in an effort to earn enough income to win the affections of a nightclub employee.
“I am willing to work until I die just for (his) smiling face,” reads an ominous tweet sent by Noguchi (@1220manae) on March 15. “Outside of that, there is nothing else.”
She is referring to a bar host whom she had met while he was touting in the street, and it wasn’t long before he had his hooks in her.
“He pestered her for cash,” an investigator tells the tabloid. “Rumors went around that she spent one million yen on a champagne spree (in his club).”
Noguchi was of one mind.
“She wanted to see him,” adds the investigator, “and she toiled in the fuzoku (sex-related) industry to do it.”
The victim was also a regular at two other clubs.
“She loved to play, and her fuzoku work wasn’t covering her expenses,” says the investigator. “So she started taking out loans from friends.”
One of Noguchi’s creditors was an 18-year-old female, a former classmate who is among the suspects. According to police, she and the other three suspects used a rental car to abduct Noguchi as she walked with friends on April 19 in Chiba City.
On the same day that Noguchi’s body was found, Ide turned himself in to officers at the Kamagaya Police Station after a warrant had been issued for his arrest. According to police, Nakano and the 18-year-old female beat Noguchi as Ide drove the vehicle.
Details on when, why and how she was killed have not been forthcoming, and an autopsy conducted on her body did not reveal a cause of death, according to the Asahi Shimbun (April 28). As well, police have not yet been able to determine when her body was buried.
A news reporter tells Nikkan Gendai that an overbearing father caused Noguchi, the oldest of three daughters, to run away from home.
“After February, she didn’t return home even once,” says the reporter.
The article paints a picture of sadness for Noguchi prior to her early death.
Another tweet by Noguchi, dated March 11, mentions her lack of customers. “I can’t make any money,” she writes. “So I can’t see him. I just want to die.” (A.T.)
Source: “Hatarakedo oitsukazu…higeki wo maneita Funabashi 18-sai shojo no hosuto asobi,” Nikkan Gendai (April 28)
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