SAITAMA (TR) – Last month, Yota Watanabe, a former contestant in a popularity contest at Keio University, was arrested for a sixth time for sexual assault.
In reporting on the arrest, some news outlets mentioned that prosecutors had dropped the first five cases. Well, as TV Asahi (Dec. 11) reports, that happened in the sixth also.
Early on March 24, 2019, Watanabe and Kazuki Koyama, both 24, were alleged to have sexually assaulted a woman, aged in her 20s, inside a karaoke parlor near JR Omiya Station in Saitama City.
Afterward, Koyama forced the woman into a nearby internet cafe where he was alleged to have sexually assaulted her again.
Upon their arrests on suspicion of coerced intercourse on November 20, the suspects declined to comment on the allegations, the Omiya Police Station said.
On Friday, the Saitama District Public Prosecutor’s Office announced the non-prosecution of Watanabe and Koyama. No reason for the non-prosecution was given.
The suspects, both of no known occupation, are acquaintances. They brought the woman to the parlor after calling out to her in the street.
The matter emerged when a passerby saw the woman crying outside the station after the incident. “I was raped,” she said.
The arrest was not the first for Watanabe. In 2018, Kanagawa Prefectural Police arrested Watanabe five times for rape, indecent assault, theft and other crimes. He was not prosecuted in January of 2019.
Koyama was also arrested in one of those cases.
Watanabe appeared in the “Mr. Keio SFC Contest” in 2016. The winners of the event are determined via online voting over a three-month period.