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Chiba police find corpse after embezzlement suspect admits to killing acquaintance ‘about 15 years ago’

CHIBA (TR) – It was a most unique tactic: A man confessed to a murder that happened more than a decade ago in order to avoid talking about where the money he was handling had disappeared to.

“It was about 15 years ago,” Junya Kobayashi, 37, told police by telephone on the afternoon March 19. “I killed a former middle school classmate I was living with and buried his body. We had some trouble [between us].”

Ten days later, police searching Kobayashi’s residence in Kisarazu City and found skeletal remains, including a cranium and several bones, in his garden.

The results of an autopsy conducted the following day did not reveal a cause of death. However, it was learned that the body is that of a fairly young man, aged in his 20s to 40s.

Junya Kobayashi heads the local fire brigade (Twitter)
Police arrested Junya Kobayshi on suspicion of embezzlement on March 20 (Twitter)

To cover living expenses

According to news reports, the telephone call placed by Ogawa began with him admitting to embezzling money from the neighborhood council that he had served as an accountant since last year. Concerned about where the conversation was headed, he then confessed to the aforementioned murder, according to the online site for weekly tabloid Shukan Bunshun.

A neighbor says the amount embezzled by Ogawa was around 700,000 yen. He said he used the funds to cover living expenses. Police arrested him on suspicion of corporate embezzlement on March 20.

Ogawa’s residence consists of two structures, but one is used only for storage since it is heavily dilapidated. A neighbor tells Bunshun that the suspect, who heads the local fire brigade, lives in the other structure.

Rough upbringing

The body is believed to be that of a man who had lived in an orphanage at one point. After they finished middle school, Ogawa began serving as his sponsor, paying an accumulated 10 million for clothes and lodging fees for him. Eventually, he began living at the Kisarazu residence.

A female neighbor tells Bunshun that Ogawa had a rough upbringing. “He lived in three households, with his mother and younger sister both having disabilities, and he had to take care of them all the time. About 20 years ago, his grandfather passed away. Then, his father also passed away about 15 years ago, which is around when the killing apparently took place. His mother and sister entered a facility [around that time also].”

Police are continuing the investigation on suspicion of murder and abandoning a corpse.