A man who admitted to murdering, dismembering and storing the bodies of nine people who had expressed suicidal thoughts is facing the death penalty.
Takahiro Shiraishi, 30, pleaded guilty to the murder of eight women and one man in a two-month massacre in 2017.
Shiraishi is said to have discovered his victims using his Twitter handle, which is loosely translated to “Hangman”.
His victims voiced suicidal thoughts on the platform, and Shiraishi invited them to his apartment in Tokyo, Japan, offering to help them die.
The killer’s defense team argued that Shiraishi had their approval when they met after sending direct messages to the suspect on Twitter such as “let’s die together” and “please kill me by hanging up”.
Despite this, Shiraishi insisted that “there was no consent” from his victims and said on Wednesday, November 25, “I humbly admit my guilt and will accept the punishment.”
The defense also argued that Shiraishi was either mentally incompetent or in a state of reduced capacity at the time and should not be held criminally liable.
In September 2018, Shiraishi was subjected to psychiatric testing for five months and prosecutors concluded that he could be held criminally responsible.
Prosecutors also pointed out that the victims in no way agreed to be murdered based on Shiraishi’s testimony that they opposed when they were strangled.
Shiraishi is now facing the death penalty for his crimes that follow the Tachikawa Division of the Tokyo District Court.
A prosecutor said, “In such a short period of two months, nine young people have been killed.”
They added that Shiraishi’s crimes “deserve death.”
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