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Tabloid questions Koike’s bolstering of ALT staff after arrest of ‘Lolicon Yankee’

Jason Allison
Jason Allison (Facebook)

TOKYO (TR) – In an interview with the Sankei Shimbun in January, Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike indicated that she would like to double the number of Assistant Language Teachers (ALT) now employed at metropolitan high schools to 400 prior to the Olympic Games in 2020.

However, evening tabloid Nikkan Gendai objects to the idea following last week’s arrest of an American ALT over the alleged sexual abuse of a 16-year-old female student.

On June 27, Jason Allison, a 44-year-old resident of the Jingumae area of Shibuya Ward, invited the girl, a second-year high school student, back to his residence where he allegedly committed acts deemed obscene while knowing she was a minor.

An investigator cited by Gendai revealed that he told police that he had been sexually involved with 40 persons in his past, which made his claim of not knowing her age — “I didn’t know she was 16” — upon his arrest seem dubious.

“Let’s watch a DVD together”

In early June, Allison met the 16-year-old girl on a street in the Roppongi district of Minato Ward. They then began a correspondence via the smartphone application Line. On the day of the incident, he reportedly said to her, “Let’s watch a DVD together.” They then met in the Omotesando area before going to his residence.

According to Gendai, Allison implemented the same strategy the day before by approaching another girl, a third-year high school student, on a street near JR Shibuya Station. He then took her to the residence of a Japanese acquaintance.

“Before she and the [Japanese acquaintance] started to get involved, Allison left the premises,” the aforementioned investigator says. “Upon his return the following morning, Allison said that he wanted to also participate. However, after being rejected, it seems he returned home by himself.”

Not the first time

This was not the American’s first brush with the law in Japan. He was also arrested in the alleged sexual abuse of a third-year middle school student, 15 years of age at the time, from Kanagawa Prefecture in April of 2011.

Though not prosecuted in the case, Allison was re-arrested over a similar incident and fined in a summary court after being informally prosecuted. At the time, he was employed at a different metropolitan high school.

Given his history, Gendai has dubbed Allison the “Lolicon Yankee,” a phrase that refers to the “Lolita complex,” meaning an interest by man in a much younger girl.

No database on foreigners

The year after his arrest in Kanagawa, Allison began working at his current school in Tokyo. Gendai, naturally, wonders how this was possible given his past conviction.

“Each municipal high school makes an employment contract [with the ALT] after doing an interview, observing a simulated lesson and conducting other procedures,” the aforementioned investigator says. “But there is no database containing information on foreigners that can be shared. So, if a person remains silent, it is difficult to figure out whether they have a prior conviction or history of any kind.”

With Gendai suggesting that Allison is employed as an ALT to be close to young girls, it bristles at the Tokyo governor’s idea of adding more of his ilk. It then asks: Koike, are you paying attention?