For the worst of the worst criminals, Japan executes their criminals at least two years from the date they were sentenced to death, it is kind of a swift and sure execution. Although the death penalty is used sparingly as Japan has a low crime rate, 80% of the Japanese people support it in polls.
Hiroshi Maeue (前上 博 Maeue Hiroshi, August 8, 1968 – July 28, 2009), aka "Suicide Website Murderer", was a Japanese serial killer, who lured his victims via the internet and killed three people in 2005. Maeue suffered from a paraphilic psychosexual disorder which translated into being unable to achieve sexual release absent of performing an act of strangulation.
Birth name: Hiroshi Maeue
Also known as: Suicide Website Murderer
Born: August 8, 1968 Osaka, Japan
Died: July 28, 2009 (aged 40)
Cause of death: hanging
Number of victims: 3
Span of killings: February 19, 2005–June 10, 2005
State(s): Osaka, Osaka Prefecture
Date apprehended: August 8, 2005
Maeue entered the Kanazawa Institute of Technology, where he assaulted and strangled his male friend. He dropped out in 1988. Later, he was arrested for assault after beating and attempting to asphyxiate a male associate in 1995. After settling out of court, he was released but fired. In 2001, he was arrested once more for the attempted asphyxiation of two women, and sentenced to one year in prison, 3 years suspended sentence. Released early for good behavior, he was rearrested for attempting to asphyxiate a junior high school boy, for which he was sentenced to 1 year and 10 months imprisonment.
Suicide website murders
Maeue murdered three people after his release in 2005; he was convicted of killing a 14-year-old boy, a 25-year-old woman, and a 21-year-old man, all of whom were members of an online suicide club. He lured his victims by suggesting they meet and end their lives together by committing suicide via a charcoal burner in a sealed car. After a brief conversation, however, he would strangle them with his bare hands. This brought him sexual pleasure, and he later claimed he developed his desire to kill this way after reading of similar events in a mystery novel as a child. All three of his victims were killed within a span of four months.
Trial and death
In his trial, prosecutors called Maeue a "lust murderer." On March 28, 2007, the Osaka District Court sentenced him to death. Although his defence team launched an appeal, he accepted the judgment of the court and expressed a willingness to pay for his crimes with his life, retracting his protest on July 5, 2007. On July 28, 2009, Hiroshi Maeue was hanged in Osaka, along with 25-year-old condemned criminal Yukio Yamaji.
Man gets death for murdering suicidal trio
OSAKA (Kyodo) The Osaka District Court sentenced a man to death Wednesday for killing three people he got to know through a Web site for would-be suicides in 2005.
In handing down the sentence on Hiroshi Maeue, 38, presiding Judge Kazuo Mizushima pointed out the cruelty of the serial killings and the unlikelihood that he could be rehabilitated.
Maeue's counsel appealed the ruling.
Prosecutors had demanded the death penalty, insisting he could pose the threat of a repeat offender because he cannot control his sexual urges triggered by seeing a person being strangled and suffering.
The court said Maeue persuaded a 14-year-old junior high school student to join him in a suicide pact using charcoal stoves to produce deadly carbon monoxide, and then suffocated the victim near a mountain in Izumi, Osaka Prefecture, in May 2005.
He also killed a 25-year-old woman and a 21-year-old male university student in February and June the same year in a similar way and dumped their corpses.
"It's brutal, heartless, devilish, and his sexual propensity is deep-rooted and difficult to ameliorate," the judge said.
In December, the court decided to adopt as evidence a mental diagnosis stating the defendant's mental competence was undiminished at the time of the murders.
A mental-health expert who made the diagnosis also testified at the court that Maeue was mentally competent.
Maeue pleaded guilty to the three murders and when the judge asked him whether he would commit such crimes again if released, he said, "I have worries."
The prosecutors accused Maeue of committing "lust murder." His defense counsel sought to avoid the death penalty.
Last appeal fails
The Supreme Court on Tuesday finalized the death penalty for a taxi driver who burned five people to death during a May 2001 robbery at a branch of consumer lender Takefuji Corp. in Aomori Prefecture.
The finalized ruling makes defendant Mitsuhiro Kobayashi, 48, the 102nd death-row inmate in Japan.
Kobayashi was convicted of demanding money and scattering gasoline in the Takefuji branch in Hirosaki at around 10:50 a.m. on May 8, 2001. He set fire to the premises after a branch manager refused to give him the money, killing five employees and injuring the manager and three others.
At the trial, Kobayashi denied he intended to kill, claiming, "I didn't mean to kill them and thought the five had run away before I committed arson."
The Aomori District Court sentenced him to death in February 2003, determining his "willful negligence" resulted in the death of the employees on the grounds that he continued to demand cash from various people even after the employees ran into another room and he was left alone with the branch manager.
Kobayashi appealed, but the Sendai High Court upheld the decision in February 2004.
"We believe that the (top) court made a proper and impartial legal judgment," a Takefuji representative said.
The Japan Times: Thursday, March 29, 2007
(C) All rights reserved
THREE VICTIMS FEARED
Alleged killer linked to suicide site
OSAKA (Kyodo) A 36-year-old man arrested late Friday on suspicion of killing a woman he met through a suicide Web site has confessed to killing two other victims who also believed he shared their desire to commit suicide, according to police sources.
Hiroshi Maeue, with a jacket over his head, is escorted Saturday morning out of a police station in Kawachi Nagano, Osaka Prefecture, on his way to be questioned by prosecutors.
Hiroshi Maeue, 36, an employee at a temporary staff agency, was arrested on suspicion of suffocating Michiko Nagamoto, 25, in February.
He has also reportedly admitted to killing a male junior high school student from Hyogo Prefecture in May and a male college student from Higashi Osaka in June, and dumping their bodies in mountains in southern parts of Osaka Prefecture.
Late Saturday, police found what appeared to be the partial remains of the junior high school student on a mountain slope where Maeue said he buried the body.
The Osaka Prefectural Police suspect Maeue had proposed to Nagamoto that they commit suicide together, even though he apparently had no intention of killing himself, the sources said.
Maeue is suspected of killing her Feb. 19 inside a rented car after sending her an e-mail asking to meet. He allegedly abandoned her body in a mountain forest.
The police sources said he admitted to killing her, and told investigators he feels "sexually excited" to see a person being suffocated and suffering in agony.
Maeue is from Sakai and Nagamoto was from Toyonaka, both in Osaka Prefecture. They apparently met for the first time at the time of Nagamoto's death, though they had exchanged e-mail about 20 times since late last year.
Nagamoto's body was found Feb. 23 and was later identified through fingerprints. The body was buried along a river in a mountainous area in Kawachinagano, Osaka Prefecture.
Police traced Maeue as a suspect by tracking down records of e-mails as well as the car rental contract, according to the sources.
Maeue reportedly told police he also suffocated a male junior high school student in May and a male college student in June, and abandoned their bodies in separate mountainous areas in southern Osaka Prefecture.
After checking missing persons reports, police suspect the victim in the May case was a 14-year-old boy from Kobe and the other a 21-year-old college student.
Suicide Web sites have made headlines in recent years as a number of people have committed suicides in groups after meeting through the Internet. These people typically commit suicide through carbon monoxide poisoning by confining themselves in sealed vehicles and burning charcoal stoves.
Maeue is believed to have posted messages on several suicide Web sites.
Since his mid-20s, he was arrested on several occasions for attempting to suffocate female passersby on streets. In 2002, he was sentenced to 10 months for one of those incidents.
The Japan Times: Sunday, Aug. 7, 2005
(C) All rights reserved
3 die in fake net suicide pacts
August 8, 2005 - 9:36AM
August 8, 2005 - 9:36AM
A man has confessed to killing three people, including a 14-year-old boy, by forming fake suicide pacts through Japan's widely publicised suicide websites, a newspaper says.
Hiroshi Maeue, 36, told police he suffocated a young woman, a college student and the boy and filmed the killings for his enjoyment, the Yomiuri Shimbun said.
The suspect was arrested on Friday over the death of the female victim, 25-year-old Michiko Nagamoto of the western city of Osaka. He found her name on a suicide website and sent 20 emails urging they die together, the daily said.
He suggested burning charcoal in a sealed car to kill themselves from carbon monoxide poisoning - a method recommended on websites. Instead, he tied her up in a rented car and killed her by sealing her nose and mouth with his hands, the Yomiuri Shimbun said.
"I wanted to watch a face in agony," Maeue was quoted as saying.
After killing the woman, Maeue went on to look for more victims on suicide websites and killed the boy and the university student, the report said.
He allegedly dumped their bodies in nearby mountains and a dam. Osaka police declined comment on the case.
Japan has seen a widely reported spate of internet suicides with lonely people forming pacts online with strangers to support one another as they die.
At least 65 people have died in such pacts since October, usually by sealing the windows of cars and lighting antique charcoal burners for the carbon dioxide poisoning.
Japan has the highest suicide rate in the industrialised world, with 24.1 suicides per 100,000 people each year, according to the World Health Organization.
Japanese net suicide pact murderer to hang
Suffocated three victims
A Japanese man who arranged suicide pacts via the internet with three people he subsequently killed has been sentenced to death, AFP reports.
Hiroshi Maeue, 38, met a 25-year-old woman online and "proposed that they kill themselves together". However, when they entered the car chosen to host the suicide, he "bound her with ropes and choked her to death". His other victims were "a 21-year-old college student and a 14-year-old junior high school student", similarly dispatched.
Maeue filmed the murders and even issued a ransom demand for the high school student's return after killing him.
A court-ordered examination confirmed Maeue did not suffer "any mental disorder and that he was mentally competent". He pleaded guilty to the charges.
In sentencing Maeue to hang, Osaka District Court presiding Judge Kazuo Mizushima said: "The crime was cruel, harsh, and outrageous. This was a crime aimed at fulfilling the accused's sexual desire. It is difficult for him to change these unusual characteristics. We cannot help but give the extreme penalty."