Get Japan Times tomorrow Tues Mar 24: Zeit Gist on criminal justice system


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Hi Blog.  On the road in Tokyo Kagurazaka, showing documentary SOUR STRAWBERRIES tonight in Shinbashi (tomorrow in Takadanobaba), something simple for today.

Heads up to tell you about my next Japan Times Zeit Gist article (my 47th), out tomorrow, Tuesday March 24 (Wednesday 25th outside conurbs).  Talking about Japan’s criminal justice system and how it treats NJ suspects and defendants differently by nationality.  An excerpt to whet the appetites:

“Examine any justice system and patterns emerge. For example, consider how Japan’s policing system treats non-Japanese. ZEIT GIST has discussed numerous times (Jul. 8 2008, Feb. 20 and Nov. 13 2007, May 24 2005, Jan. 13 2004, Oct. 7 2003) how police target and racially profile foreigners under anti-crime and anti-terrorism campaigns.

“But the bias goes beyond cops and into criminal prosecution, with Japanese courts treating suspects differently according to nationality. We’ve already discussed how judges discount testimony from foreigners (ZG Aug. 14 2007), but here’s the emerging pattern: If you are a Japanese committing a crime towards a non-Japanese, you tend to get off lightly. Vice versa and you “haven’t a Chinaman’s chance,” as it were…”

Get a copy of the Japan Times from the newsstands tomorrow and read the rest! Arudou Debito in Tokyo.

3 comments on “Get Japan Times tomorrow Tues Mar 24: Zeit Gist on criminal justice system

  • I have a question debito, is it possible to take the police department to small claims court? for example a guy has his stuff damaged during a random id check..

    — You can try. Good luck, though.

  • Another exacting, persuasive article.

    I left Japan in 2003 after being assaulted on a train by a drunken builder. Back at the police station I was verballed by police and inspectors, but resisted making any admissions. After all, despite being a foreigner, I was the victim.

    Soon after I returned to my own country to study law as it were, and now practice back in Tokyo. After several years of study and practice what is abundantly clear to me is that there is no rule of law in Japan. This is a country run by custom alone. The rule of man – Japanese man – is all that prevails here. Sure there is a legal “system” but that doesn’t mean that it is conducive to maintaining the integrity of the administration of justice. Japan is first world economy (for now) with a prehistoric legal system.

  • I just finished reading your japan times article it was very good, but its a shame that you didnt include the infamous tokyo hit in run incident (BY TWO JAPANESE) that killed an american basketball team member, and they both never even were charged with a crime. remeber?

    — Sorry. I have only so much space.

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