Vietnam Time

7/6/2018 4:26:10 PM

Vietnamese girl’s murder gets life sentence

A Japanese court on July 6 sentenced Yasumasa Shibuya to life in prison over the 2017 murder of a 9-year-old Vietnamese girl in Chiba prefecture, according to the Kyodo news agency.

Yasumasa Shibuya. (Source: Kyodo)

While Shibuya has denied involvement in the death of Le Thi Nhat Linh, prosecutors had sought the death penalty for the 47-year-old neighbour.

Linh, a third-grade student at Mutsumi Daini Elementary School in Matsudo, Chiba Prefecture, went missing on March 24 last year and was found dead near a drainage ditch in the city of Abiko two days later.

Shibuya was arrested on April 14 and later indicted on suspicion of abducting Linh by his vehicle, and sexually assaulting and strangling her before abandoning her body.

While prosecutors said Shibuya's DNA was found on the girl's body and that blood and saliva matching her DNA was found in Shibuya's vehicle, defense lawyers claimed the DNA samples may have been planted by investigators.

During the lay judge trial, the prosecutors said Shibuya faces particularly serious blame given his position at the time as head of the parents' group watching over children on their way to the school.

Linh's father Le Anh Hao had also requested the death penalty for Shibuya.

Prior to the ruling, Shibuya said he intends to appeal if found guilty./.

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