AKITA (TR) – Akita Prefectural Police believe two bodies discovered on the shore of Akita City on Monday may have come come from a suspected North Korean vessel found earlier this month, bringing the total number of bodies to six, reports NHK (Dec. 19).
At 4:00 p.m., a worker using heavy equipment to lift the wooden boat found the two corpses on the sand beneath it at the mouth of the Omono River in the town of Arayamachi. By the time personnel from the Akita Coast Guard Office arrived at the scene one of the two bodies had washed out to sea.
Both bodies, which were partially skeletal, are believed to be male, according to authorities.
On December 13, the boat and another vessel were found by coast guard personnel close to one another on the beach. Akita Prefectural Police and coast guard personnel later found three corpses in one boat and another body in the second.
Last week, the Japan Coast Guard revealed that a record 83 suspected North Korean boats have washed ashore along the Sea of Japan coast in 2017, the largest number since figures began being kept four years ago.
The discovery on Monday brings the total number of bodies found in the two vessels beached at Arayamachi to six. Based on the features of the boats, authorities believe they are also from North Korea.