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Tokyo: Man handed 29-year term over murder of ex-girlfriend

TOKYO (TR) – The Tokyo District Court last week handed a 52-year-old man a 29-year prison term over the killing of his former girlfriend two years ago, reports the Sankei Shimbun (Dec. 14).

On December 14, presiding judge Kazuo Sasaki described the actions of Keitaro Saga, 52, as “inhumane” in his killing of Shiori Nakamoto, 24, and the destruction and abandoning of her body. The prosecution had sought a life-in-prison term.

According to the ruling, Saga, a resident of Kawaguchi City, Saitama Prefecture, killed Nakamoto at her residence in Tokyo’s Meguro Ward in September, 2016. After carving up her body, he carved it up dumped it in various locations, including in rivers in Saitama and Chiba prefectures.

“It was a planned crime, one in which the body was destroyed after the killing,” the prosecution said in its closing argument. “With such cold and cruel crime, the fear and distress experienced by the victim are immeasurable.”

Keitaro Saga
Keitaro Saga (Twitter)

During the investigation, Saga told police that he stabbed her with a fruit knife after they got into a fight over an unpaid loan he had extended to her. “I then cut up her body with a saw,” the suspect was quoted in a previous report. “I scattered parts of the body in a river and sent others down a drain in her apartment in dumping it.”

During the trial, however, the defense denied the charges of murder, saying the killing took place as the two struggled inside the residence.