In 2008, Tomohiro Kato hit the crowd in the shopping area with a truck, killing 3 people, then got out of the vehicle and stabbed 4 others. There are 107 people on death row in the country.
39-year-old Tomohiro Kato, responsible for killing 7 people in 2008 in Akihabara, Tokyo, was executed: he was hanged in the Tokyo detention center. In the attack he drove his truck down a street in the downtown Akihabara electronics shopping area, crashing into the crowd and killing three pedestrians, then got out of the vehicle stabbing four people to death and injuring 10 others. was sentenced to death in 2011 by the Tokyo District Court and the Supreme Court dismissed his appeal in 2015.
“Irritated by online bullying”
At the trial Kato admitted his crimes, motivating them by the fact “that he was irritated by online bullying”, sparking a great debate in the Japanese society of the time, on the influence of the internet and the relationship with the mental health of young people (the author of the massacre was 25 years old).
The attack took place around lunchtime, during an intense shopping weekend in the center of the Japanese capital. After the massacre, the laws on the ownership of knives were strengthened.
In the grounds for the death sentence, the Tokyo District Court called him a “brutal crime where he hadn’t shown a shred of humanity.”
The inmates do not know the date of execution until the very morning they are hanged
There are 107 people on death row in Japan, 61 of whom are seeking a retrial. Together with the United States, they are the only two countries in the G7 group that maintain the death penalty. The executions are carried out in great secrecy: the prisoners are not informed of their fate until the very morning they are hanged.
Since 2007, Japan has begun to disclose the names of those executed and some details of their crimes. From the meager official communications, it appears that 3 other prisoners were hanged in 2021, but their personal details were not disclosed.
In 2018, 15 death sentences were carried out, including the execution of cult “guru” Aum Shinrikyo and 12 former followers, convicted of the sarin gas attack on the Tokyo subway that killed 13 people.