In an apparent serial killing case that is transfixing and horrifying the nation, Japanese police has found 9 dismembered bodies hidden in coolers in an apartment southwest of Tokyo.
Police were investigating on Tuesday to identify the victims after the man who lived there, 27-year-old Takahiro Shiraishi, confessed to cutting them up and hiding them in cold-storage cases, some covered with cat litter.
Although Japan has one of the lowest crime rates in the world, it has seen some high-profile killings recently.The hideous case captured attention in a country known for public safety, topping news with reports that showed the building where the suspect lived in a small studio apartment. It was cordoned off by yellow police tape, its balcony draped with blue plastic sheets to block the view as investigators went in and out.
Police said that the bodies, in varying stages of decomposition, were found Monday while they were investigating the disappearance of a 23-year-old woman, the spokesman said. He did not give his name, in line with police policy. The woman’s brother reported her missing last week.The missing woman is thought to be one of the eight women and one man who were dismembered and hidden in the apartment from late August to late October.Reports said the missing woman got in contact with Shiraishi via Twitter, seeking a partner for a suicide pact and saying she was afraid to die alone.
Police found a toolbox and saw in Shiraishi’s apartment. It may have been used to dismember the bodies, the police official said. Shiraishi told police that he dismembered the bodies in his bathroom, which according to online descriptions of the apartment building where he lived was a plastic-sealed “unit bath.” He put out some of the body parts as garbage.
About Shiraishi, Japan’s national broadcaster NHK said he was working as a “scout” in the sex industry, recruiting women in entertainment districts in Tokyo.