Tokyo Crime Squad: The Lucie Blackman CaseIn 2000 Tokyo, a British woman goes missing, leading to a sprawling investigation into a crime spree by a predator with potentially hundreds of victims.
Source link The year 2000 in Tokyo has been marked by a tragedy. On July 1, British citizen Lucie Blackman, a flight attendant from Sevenoaks, disappeared without a trace. In the months that followed her disappearance, Japanese police launched an extensive investigation, uncovering a large-scale crime spree and a predator with potentially hundreds of victims.
Though Tokyo had long been considered a relatively safe city and, in the decade before the Lucie Blackman case, the crime rate was low, the following investigation shed light on a world of greed and manipulation that had gone unnoticed by police. After months of searching, authorities discovered a connection between Blackman’s disappearance and a man named Joji Obara, who had a long history of preying upon young women.
Investigators quickly discovered a pattern among Obara’s victims: young women in their twenties, who had all been lured in with false job offers or romantic overtures, and then went missing. Obara had been drugging and sexually assaulting his intended victims, and the link between Blackman and Obara was quickly uncovered.
Police began piecing together a case against Obara and were soon able to bring him to trial. During the course of Obara’s trial and eventual conviction, Japanese police, with the assistance of the Japanese media, were able to locate the body of Lucie Blackman, proving that she too had been taken by the predator. In April 2007, Obara was sentenced to life in prison for rape, abduction, and the murder of Lucie Blackman.
Unfortunately, due to the mismanagement of some of the evidence, a conviction was never secured in the other cases involving Obara, who may have had up to a hundred victims. Although Obara stands convicted in the case of Lucie Blackman, this tragedy serves as a reminder of how dangerous the world can be and highlights the need for continued vigilance in preventing, investigating, and prosecuting all forms of crime.