Hi Blog. File this article under the “sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander” category.
Nikkan Gendai reports on Japan grousing about a lack of extradition treaties, creating a situation where foreigners committing crimes in Japan can easily flee abroad and not be sent back to face justice. Then the article concludes that, “Japan is not a place where foreign criminals typically flee in order to escape arrest for crimes they committed elsewhere.”
Quite. It’s only the Japanese crooks that can flee here and get away with it. The most famous “Japanese” absconder from overseas justice, former Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori, is a textbook example of how Japan protects its own, even after they turn a country upside down. Note that the GOJ in its favor then cited the lack of an extradition treaty with Peru.
Blog backlog to several articles and recent updates on Fujimori at
Then we get into all the Japanese divorcees of international marriages who abduct children into the safe haven of Japan, even when convicted of crimes overseas, and you can see how widespread the problem has gotten. More on that at
The clearest example being the Murray Wood Case:
Sorry, Japan, you can’t have it both ways–make it seem as if the kokutai is a victim of rapacious and sneaky foreigners, then allow exactly the same thing to go on for your own repatriating nationals. Maybe this development will force Japan to make its own citizens accountable for crimes overseas as well… Anyway, the article:
Debito in Sapporo
Lack of extradition agreements prompting more criminals to flee abroad
Japan Today, December 31, 2006
Courtesy of Matt at The Community. His comments follow below.
The number of cases involving foreigners who commit crimes in Japan
and flee the country to avoid arrest has been rapidly increasing,
reports Nikkan Gendai (Dec 27). The most recent incident involved the
murder of a 41-year-old Brazilian woman and her two sons, ages 10 and
15, in Yaizu City, Shizuoka Prefecture. The suspect in the murders,
Brazilian Neves Edilson Donizeti, 43, departed from Narita soon after
Japanese authorities have advised Interpol that Donizeti is wanted in
connection with the crimes. Unfortunately, the chance of Donizeti
being apprehended in Brazil and extradited to Japan is virtually nil.
According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Japan has concluded
extradition agreements with just two countries, the United States and
South Korea. And Donizeti is particularly fortunate in that his own
country’s laws specifically forbid the extradition of its citizens,
except in drug-related offenses.
The approximately 188,000 Brazilians currently residing in Japan make
them the third largest foreign minority after Koreans (529,000) and
A spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs tells Nikkan
Gendai that extradition is not the sole means of arranging for the
return of a wanted criminal to Japan. “It’s also possible to make a
request via diplomatic channels,” he explains.
However, diplomacy has not proved any more effective and currently
Brazil alone is said to harbor some 86 felons wanted for crimes in
“The hijacking (by leftist radicals) of the JAL passenger jet Yodo to
North Korea in April 1970 is a typical example,” points out policeman
turned journalist Ken Kitashiba. “If the other country doesn’t regard
the act as a crime, it won’t turn them over. The international rules
simply don’t apply. This is the case not only for North Korea, but
African and Middle Eastern countries, which take an uncooperative
stance toward Japan. There’s nothing the Japanese police can do about
Well, remarks Nikkan Gendai tongue in cheek, at least it’s a good
thing that Japan is not a place where foreign criminals typically
flee in order to escape arrest for crimes they committed elsewhere.
Additional comments from Matt at The Community:
There is a lack of extradition treaty between Brazil and Japan.
Apparently, some people are committing crimes in Japan and escaping
1. Last year I had a talk with some middle-aged ladies about
immigration increasing in Japan. They all responded with “kowai,
kowai” (scary, scary). And when I asked them what was on their minds,
they said that foreigners can commit offenses in Japan then run away
to other countries. This was something new so I wasn’t prepared with
any kind of come back. Is this issue causing any (probably unfair)
problems with the perception of foreigners in Japan?
2. It’s a sore spot for Brazilians living in Japan, as they want
justice too. Often they are the ones who have been the recipients of
the crime. I’m not clear on this, but they *might* be the ones who
raised this issue.
There is a discussion of this on NBR’s Japan forum. If the following
link works, it should open an archive page for that forum, with the
search word, “extradition” already typed in, and the column sorted
according to date. Read the top five or six posts, especially Daniel