Ex-Morning-Musume idol Hitomi Yoshizawa gets suspended sentence for Tokyo drunk-driving hit-and-run
Japan Times -- Dec 01
Hitomi Yoshizawa, a former member of the all-girl J-pop group Morning Musume, was sentenced Friday to two years in prison suspended for five years for injuring two people in a hit-and-run incident in September while driving under the influence of alcohol.

According to the ruling handed down at the Tokyo District Court, Yoshizawa, 33, ran a red light at a speed of 86 kilometers per hour on the morning of Sept. 6 in Nakano Ward, Tokyo, and hit a female cyclist and then a male pedestrian before fleeing the scene.

"Heavy concentrations of alcohol were detected in the defendant … she left the site of the accident without stopping to help the victims. Her criminal responsibility is fairly grave," said Judge Takao Sato.

During the first hearing of the case, on Thursday, Yoshizawa's defense lawyer had called for a suspended sentence, arguing that the former singer has promised not to obtain a driver's license again even after the revocation period ends and that she and the two victims have already agreed to settle out of court.

Although the ruling handed down a suspended term as Yoshizawa's counsel had hoped, the court opted for a five-year suspension - the longest permitted under the law - on the grounds that the defendant needs time to "deepen her remorse" for her actions.

ひき逃げをしたなどの罪に問われた元「モーニング娘。」吉澤ひとみ被告の裁判で、東京地裁は懲役2年、執行猶予5年の有罪判決を言い渡した。この執行猶予の長さの意味について取材した。  元モーニング娘。
News sources: Japan Times, ANNnewsCH
Apr 23
A 17-year-old boy who was arrested for riding his motorbike through a red traffic light escaped from police despite being handcuffed but turned himself five hours later in Ashikaga, Tochigi Prefecture, on Sunday. (Japan Today)
Apr 22
Police have arrested a 40-year-old man over the alleged stalking of his former girlfriend whose whereabouts were unknown for three days, reports the Sankei Shimbun (tokyoreporter.com)
Apr 22
Police in Tokyo said Sunday they have arrested Naoya Urata, lead singer of the six-member pop group AAA, on suspicion of assault. (Japan Today)
Apr 18
Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested a pair of hostesses over the alleged theft of the wallet of a drunk pedestrian in the Ueno entertainment area of Taito Ward last year, reports TV Asahi (tokyoreporter.com)
Apr 18
Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko are in the city of Ise in central Japan on their last trip to a local region before the Emperor's abdication on April 30. (NHK)
Apr 18
A senior manager with Japan Airlines Co. was arrested on Wednesday on suspicion of committing an indecent act with a female junior high school student in exchange for money, according to the Metropolitan Police Department. (Japan Times)
Apr 18
British rock band Queen will perform in Japan next January as part of their 2020 Rhapsody Tour amid a wave of popularity after their biopic film "Bohemian Rhapsody" won an Academy Award, organizer Creativeman Productions Ltd. said Wednesday. (Kyodo)
Apr 18
Tissue paper and other daily products sold at Osaka Prison are so expensive that inmates mostly cannot purchase them, a situation amounting to a human rights violation, according to local lawyers. (Japan Times)
Apr 16
Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested a 55-year-old woman over the alleged fatal bashing of a man believed to be her former husband at their residence in Mitaka City, reports the Asahi Shimbun (tokyoreporter.com)
Apr 16
A woman was arrested Monday for attempted murder over the abandonment of a newborn baby in a toilet bowl, after giving birth in a convenience store bathroom in Saitama Prefecture, police said. (Japan Today)