東京地裁判決は無期懲役、Lucie Blackmanに関する起訴事実は無罪としました。 さてこれを判決公判前から関心の高かったイギリスのメディアがどう報じているかというと、意外に冷静ですね。 そしてどうも父親への風当たりが強い。  以下BBCニュースですが、タイトルはObara acquitted over Lucie deathですから『織原、ルーシーの死については無罪』といったところですね。 そして判決そのものに対する講評はA Japanese businessman has been acquitted of raping and killing British bar hostess Lucie Blackman. But Joji Obara was sentenced to life imprisonment for raping nine other women, including one - Australian Carita Ridgway - who died. <英国人のホステスルーシー・ブラックマン強姦、殺害の容疑で訴追されていた織原城二は無罪になった。 しかし彼はオーストラリア人のカリータ・リッヂウェイ他の9名に対する強姦、殺害容疑では終身刑を宣告された。>と事実関係を報じた後に、Last year Mr Blackman accepted 100 million yen (£450,000) from a friend of Obara, but he denied it was "blood money" and said such "offers of condolence" were common in Japan and did not affect the court case.ですから<昨年ブラックマン氏は小原の友人から一億円を受け取ったが、その友人は、その金は哀悼の意の表明としての日本の慣行であり慰謝料ではないし裁判に影響を及ぼすものでもないと語った。>というような意味ですね。  この件に触れたロイターのイギリス版の記事Obara not guilty in Blackman deathでは、"The court cannot prove that he single-handedly was involved in her (Blackman's) death," Presiding Judge Tsutomu Tochigi told the Tokyo District Court. "What is clear is that the victim was together with the accused and then vanished and next was found dead."と判決理由を示した上でLast September, Blackman's father, Tim Blackman, accepted a 100 million yen (420,000 pounds) "condolence payment" paid by a friend of Obara, saying he would donate a substantial amount of it to a charity set up in his daughter's name.  But his his ex-wife, Lucie's mother, criticised him, saying the action could affect the sentencing.ですから、織原にしてやられた、一億円が判決に影響を与えたというのがイギリス側の受け止め方なのでしょうが、ロイターにはMEMORIES REVIVEDという副題の部分があって、そこではMemories of the Blackman case were revived in March this year when Briton Lindsay Ann Hawker, a 22-year-old English teacher from Brandon near Coventry, was found dead in a sand-filled bathtub in an apartment near Tokyo. Police are still searching for Hawker's suspected killer, a 28-year-old Japanese man who fled the apartment where her body was found when they arrived to question him.と、最近発生したリンゼイ・アン殺害事件と関連づけています。  いま我が国ではアメリカで韓国人学生が引き起こした大量射殺事件で嫌韓厨が盛り上がっているんですが、一つ間違えば朝鮮人を笑っているような場合ではない事件だと思いますよ。 いま現在これで英国内に嫌日感情や反日感情が盛り上がってるという状況ではありませんが、それが二本人であれ在日であれ帰化日本人であれJapaneseと書かれうる白人コンプレックスの変質者による犯罪が今後も続くようであれば、それは容易に反日であったり黄色人種差別へと発展しかねない。
BBCには書かれていないんですがロイターにはForeign hostesses from a range of countries work in Tokyo, but many work illegally on tourist visas, making it difficult for them to report trouble to police.などと背景に触れる記述があり、こういう冷静な論調である内はまだ大丈夫なんでしょうが...

How the bubble burst for Lucie's alleged killer (TIMES)
August 17, 2005
Five years ago Lucie Blackman, a British bar hostess, was missing in Japan. As the trial of Joji Obara, the man accused of her murder, continues, our correspondent profiles the ‘playboy’ with a dark past and £122m of debt

THROUGHOUT his strange life, and the various identities that he created for himself, Joji Obara fled from cameras;even today, four years into his interminable trial, there are only two images of him in public circulation. The first is from the early 1970s when he was a university student in Tokyo:a shy smile, youthful skin, a young man poignantly uncorrupted. The second is the sketch by the courtroom artist of Obara as he was seen in the Tokyo District Court last month:thinning black hair, patchy goatee, crumpled charcoal suit, flanked by two unsmiling guards. Thirty years separate the two images, a period in which Joji Obara left few public traces. In Britain, he is known as the man accused of killing the young British woman Lucie Blackman, the Tokyo bar hostess whose dismembered body was dug up from a Japanese beach near his apartment in 2001. Japanese remember that he is charged with six other rapes and one other count of “rape leading to death”. Newspaper accounts refer to him without elaboration as a “property developer” and “playboy”. But these vague terms hardly begin to do justice to his extraordinary career.
It reads like a metaphor for Japan’s bubble economy, the period between the 1980s and early 1990s when the country’s economy went up like a rocket only to crash down like an anvil. In the three decades between university and criminal prosecution, Joji Obara inherited a fortune;today he has debts of £122 million. He went from being the despised son of an immigrant to a member of the elite;now he is on trial as a serial rapist. And in an age of extravagant, excessive consumption, he lived his life on the basis that anything could be bought, and that those who had money were entitled to everything they wanted:pleasure, status, immunity from the law and, above all, the bodies of women.
He was born Kim Sung Jong in 1952 to Korean parents in Osaka. His father was a poor immigrant who built himself a fortune in taxis, property and pachinko, the addictive Japanese version of bagatelle. At 15, Kim Sung Jong was sent to the preparatory school for the private and prestigious Keio University in Tokyo. There he studied politics and law. It was at this time that he underwent surgery on his eyes to make them larger and less oriental, and he took on a new, Japanese name, Seisho Hoshiyama.
When Seisho was 17, his father died in Hong Kong. Seisho shared the vast inheritance with his two brothers and, at the age of 21, underwent another shift of identity, taking on Japanese nationality and the name of Joji Obara.
Those who know him are convinced that his strange upbringing played a part in forming his personality. But how exactly- A child of exiles who loses his father suddenly, while still young, who cuts himself off from his family, changes his name and even his face, and who becomes so rich that he never has to work . . .the potential for dislocation and maladjustment is obvious. But there are many people who have suffered more, and few of them have become half as maladjusted as Joji Obara.
Japanese magazine reports suggest that Obara began to show signs of a sexually predatory nature in the early 1980s. He was arrested in October 2000, and the videos of his sexual escapades are said to number 200;for nearly 20 years he is believed to have raped women at an average rate of more than ten a year - possibly more, as these are just the ones that he filmed.
His modus operandi is set out in court documents concerning a Canadian woman named Donna whom he is alleged to have raped in 1996. Donna worked as a hostess in Roppongi, a cramped half-square mile of Central Tokyo containing a concentration of bars, pubs, cabarets, nightclubs, karaoke bars, lap-dancing joints and hostess bars. The court documents say that Obara met Donna in March 1996 at a club in Roppongi, and introduced himself as “Kazu” (he had a roster of pseudonyms, including “Yuji” and “Koji”). He took her to his apartment in the seaside town of Zushi, south of Tokyo, and gave her a drink which he described as “a very rare herb wine from the Philippines”. After one sip she fell unconscious. When she had come to, feeling dizzy, nauseous and lethargic, Obara told her that she had passed out after drinking a bottle of vodka. Five years later, after Obara’s arrest, the police found a large number of home videos of the suspect having sex with unconscious women, foreign and Japanese. Among them was Donna.
According to the prosecution, he took her to his bedroom, removed her trousers and underwear, and raped her in front of his video camera;Obara appeared in many of the videos naked, or wearing a Zorro mask.
To ensure the women’s compliance, the prosecution alleges, he pressed over their faces a rag soaked in chloroform, a poison which damages the liver. In 1992, an Australian woman named Carita Ridgway fell unconscious and died of liver failure a few days after being raped by Obara. With remarkable composure, Obara checked her into hospital, consoled her distraught parents and succeeded in convincing the doctors that her illness had been caused by hepatitis and a bad oyster. It was in the summer of 2000 that he met Lucie Blackman, a former British Airways stewardess, who was working in a Roppongi bar called Casablanca. On July 1, the two went to the apartment in Zushi together. For seven dismal months, nothing more was heard of Lucie. Her father, Tim, flew out repeatedly to Tokyo, accompanied by his younger daughter, Sophie. They produced missing-person posters and set up a telephone hotline. They consulted detectives and bar girls, journalists and psychics, and even engineered a meeting with a sympathetic Tony Blair while he was on a visit to Japan. As a result of the publicity surrounding the case, three foreign women, including Donna, came forward to describe waking up, sore and sick, in Obara’s bed, with no memory of the night before. (Several of them, it turned out, had reported him to the Roppongi police, but had been ignored.) The police arrested Obara in October 2000 and raided his properties, where they found decades worth of accumulated clutter.
Court evidence reveals that his cars included a Ferrari, an Aston Martin, a Bentley and a Rolls-Royce. There were piles of diaries and documents, and in the refrigerator the body of Obara’s beloved pet, a German shepherd dog, accompanied by frozen dog food and roses. (He later explained that he was waiting for biotechnology to advance so that he could have the animal cloned.) They also found the rape videos, date- rape drugs and chloroform, and blonde hairs belonging to Lucie. Finally, the following February, her body was recovered from a seaside cave, 200 yards from one of Obara’s apartments, cut with a chainsaw into ten pieces.
Obara and his lawyers argued last month that Lucie was a drug user who died of an overdose, a claim dismissed as ludicrous by her father, Tim. The prosecution claims that the drugs that killed her were Rohypnol and chloroform, administered by Obara. Unlike the other girls, there is no video of Lucie and Obara and, because of the state of the body, no decisive DNA evidence. But even ignoring the mass of circumstantial evidence amassed by the prosecution, Obara’s defence team faces one inescapable fact:in criminal cases such as that of Obara, fewer than 1 per cent of defendants are acquitted.
But few battle so hard to prove their innocence. At the detention centre where he lives, documents relating to the trial stand in piles almost to the ceiling of his small cell. One of his team of ten lawyers visits him almost every day. Apart from the eight criminal charges against him, he is involved in litigation involving his companies. Last year he was declared personally bankrupt, with debts of 23.8 billion yen (£122 million).
Apart from his lawyers, only his mother, now in her eighties, is allowed to visit him;for the past few months she has been too unwell to make the journey from Osaka. He gets on fine with the guards at the detention centre, but rarely smiles or makes a joke. He seldom speaks of the past or of his family, and never about friends.
“My impression is that he is totally sane,” says one who knows him.
“There’s nothing crazy about him except the way he treats women.
He’s very, very clever but very selfish, totally convinced that he is right, and he never listens to the opinions of other people. But I don’t think he ever had a true friend he could rely on, and he doesn’t now. He is a very lonely person. Apart from his lawyers, there’s no one he can rely on or consult.” In court, he follows the proceeding with concentration, scribbling notes and whispering with his lawyers. But at the two hearings last month, as he hunched in the dock, another middle-aged man sat a few feet away - Tim Blackman, whose campaign to find his daughter led directly to Obara’s arrest. He sat with his daughter, Sophie, and his partner Josephine, listening calmly while the man in the dock tried to convince the court that his daughter was a drug user.
I asked Tim Blackman what it was like to see face-to-face the man accused of killing his daughter. “I could be a bit odd,” he said. “I’m prepared to admit that. But I see somebody who is the same age as me, who has, by his actions, produced the most terrible situation for himself by doing something so heinous to somebody else’s life. And in a very strange way there’s a pathos that neutralises the more natural anger. I feel sorry for him. I do feel sorry for him.”

The 'beast with a human face' (BBC)
Last Updated: Tuesday, 24 April 2007, 08:02 GMT 09:02 UK
A Japanese businessman has been cleared of raping and killing British woman Lucie Blackman. But Joji Obara, who was convicted of killing Australian Carita Ridgway and eight other rapes, was described in court as a "beast with a human face". Between 1992 and 2000, Joji Obara attacked a number of women, drugging them before raping them and, in the case of Carita Ridgway, killing them. He may have killed others but he has been cleared of killing Lucie Blackman. A wealthy property developer, who had inherited much of his money from his father, Obara had hit hard times during Japan's recession in the early 1990s. Whether his money troubles led to a personality change is unclear but they certainly coincided with his crimes.

Money laundering
As his money troubles mounted Obara apparently became indebted to Japan's second largest yakuza, or mafia clan, the Sumiyoshi-rengo. He was used by them to launder money through his property business and as a result he came under their aegis. Earlier this year a gang war in Tokyo claimed at least one life after the Sumiyoshi fought off attempts by their arch-rivals, the Yamaguchi-gumi, to muscle in on lucrative Tokyo business, including the hostess club industry. Obara was born in Osaka in 1952 to Korean immigrant parents. His father was an entrepreneur who built his fortune on taxis, property and pachinko, the addictive arcade games beloved of so many Japanese.

Expensive education
He paid for his son to have an expensive private education and Obara went on to a prestigious university in Tokyo, where he studied politics and law. When Obara was 17, his father died - possibly at the hands of the yakuza - and he shared his inheritance with his brothers. For some years Obara lived the life of a playboy and enjoyed driving Ferraris, Aston Martins and a Rolls-Royce and spending millions of yen in swanky Tokyo hostess clubs. But his depraved sexual behaviour gradually manifested itself. He developed a fetish for sex with women who were unconscious or were feigning death. Following his arrest police would find about 200 sex videos involving Obara. One of the prosecutors at his trial described him as a "beast with a human face". Obara always claimed he paid girls who were willing to act out his fantasy but in many cases he drugged girls before raping them. Several of his victims had reported incidents to police but no action was taken. The Blackman family believe Obara's behaviour towards some of the Roppongi girls may have been covered up by those in the industry and even the police.

Convincing liar
In 1992 one of his victims died, but Obara was able to get away with it in an act of astonishing and callous bravado. Carita Ridgway, an Australian, was taken to hospital by Obara after apparently suffering food poisoning from some shellfish. The medical authorities accepted Obara's story and cited liver failure as her cause of death. He was so convincing that when Carita's parents flew to Tokyo they shook his hand and thanked him for the way he had cared for their daughter in her final hours. In the summer of 2000 he met Lucie at a club in Tokyo's Roppongi district. Obara has admitted spending the day of 1 July 2000 with her but has always denied having anything to do with her death. Her father, Tim, does not believe Obara's story. He believes Obara probably offered money and gifts to Lucie in an attempt to persuade her to meet him away from the relatively safe environment of the club. Mr Blackman thinks the trump card which Obara may have used to finally lure Lucie was a Japanese mobile phone. "Japanese mobile phones are very hard to get hold of for foreigners as you really have to be a Japanese citizen. We think that Obara probably had a supply of these phones which he offered to give to girls like Lucie, who were desperate to stay in contact with their friends in Tokyo," he said. In October 2000 Japanese police raided Obara's homes in and around Tokyo after he was named by several women who had reported waking up in a drugged state at his apartment. Detectives found hundreds of sex videos as well as chloroform, piles of diaries and documents and also the body of his German shepherd dog in the refrigerator, surrounded by roses. During his trial the businessman, who has been in custody since October 2000, sought to besmirch Lucie's character. He claimed she was lonely, in debt and using marijuana at the time of her death and he sought to use excerpts from her diary to back up his case, which were also published on a website called "The Truth About Lucie's Case". Obara painted a picture of Ms Blackman as a young woman who was out of control.

Lucie's father, Tim, said Obara was lying about his daughter using drugs and he said it was deeply hurtful hearing personal details from the diary being read out. While he was in jail Obara was declared bankrupt with debts of £122m (23.8 billion yen). He is destined to spend many years in prison despite being acquitted of Lucie's death. But Tim Blackman says he does not even feel hatred. He said:"Every feeling I have had has been towards Lucie and I don't really have any left to feel towards Obara. Sophie feels the same and it's because we have had such an intense involvement with her loss, we have exhausted our emotions. There is nothing left to feel."

Blackman hits out at 'blood money' accusations
Japanese man cleared of Lucie's murder

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