JAPAN. DEATH FOR MAN WHO BURIED VICTIMS ALIVE
May 22, 2007: a japanese man was sentenced to death for bashing two men then burying them alive.
Ryuji Kobayashi, together with several others, used golf clubs and police-style batons to beat two men of his age last year in a romantic dispute over a woman, the court said.
Kobayashi then buried the victims alive at an industrial waste site in the western city of Okayama in hopes of preventing the men from going to police, the ruling said, adding that the group also stole money from the victims.
"This is too cruel. There is no more brutal way of killing,'' Osaka District Court judge Makoto Wada said.
"Considering the gravity of the crime, there is no reason to avoid capital punishment,'' he said.
Kobayashi's lawyers had asked for leniency, citing the murderer's remorse.
"There is no choice but to ask you to take responsibility,'' Judge Wada told Kobayashi, who replied, "I am sorry.''
Japanese courts have been handing an increasing number of death sentences amid an uproar over crime in the country, which has one of the world's lowest rates of street violence. (Sources: Daily Telegraph, 22/05/2007)