Gathering to call for a withdrawal of an appeal against former professional boxer Iwao Hakamada, who was convicted in a 1966 quadruple murder case but was released from the Tokyo Detention House in 2014 under a district court ruling, and demand for an immediate launching of a retrial of the case at the high court was held in Tokyo earlier this week attended by noted persons, sources close to the case said on Sept. 24.
The gathering held on Sept. 19 at a municipal community center in the Bunkyo Ward was attended by House of Councilors member Muneo Suzuki, noted cartoonist Mitsuru Yaku and freelance journalist Shoko Egawa among others.
Shosei Nitta, the head of Japan Pro Boxing Association’s committee to call for ‘’Free Hakamada’’ movement, and Kanagawa Atsumi Boxing Gym head Hidenobu Honda, led the gathering.
According to Honda, supporters of Hakamada are expected to launch a movement, in which the committee will distribute its originally made tin badges to spectators during this year’s East Japan rookies’ tournament so that people who have been given the badges would spread the matter on their respective social networking sites to make ‘’the Hakamada case’’ better known. The committee is also contemplating beginning a campaign for raising money for the movement and collecting signatures for the case.
While the 86-year-old Hakamada was not taken into custody because of his old age, he is still stigmatized as a death-row inmate. According to the police, Hakamada stabbed to death four family members at a soybean paste shop in Shizuoka Prefecture, central Japan, on June 30, 1966 in an attempt to steal money, and them set fire to the shop after pouring gasoline on the bodies.
The main focal point between the defense and prosecution at present is the color of the blood-soaked clothes, believed to be found in the miso tank a little more than a year after the murder case.
When they were found, the redness of the bloodstain was seen. But the defense argues about the color, saying it is impossible for those clothes to maintain redness as long as more than a year in the tanks. But the prosecution side maintains redness can be retained based on its own experiments.