Saturday, June 20, 2015

Toyota Managing Officer Julie Hamp has no health problem requiring painkillers, medical checkup finds

Julie's new "luxury hotel," the Harajuku police station, where she is said to be detained in a holding cell for up to 23 days while being interrogated, prior to a possible indictment.

The Japan Times reports:
An American executive at Toyota Motor Corp. who was arrested for importing painkillers that are banned in Japan without a prescription appears not to have any health condition requiring their use, an investigative source said Saturday.
A routine health checkup conducted after the arrest of managing officer Julie Hamp on Thursday to examine her health status prior to detention showed she did not have any particular problem, the source said.

Based on this news, I doubt that Toyota will work behind the scenes to get special treatment for Julie. 

If she is indicted after she has denied the charge of intentionally smuggling narcotics, she may be in for a rough time with the Japanese justice system. 

"...Hamp has a few things going for her as she navigates through Japan’s judicial system, including social status, reputation, and Toyota itself. The process of investigation, trial and verdict would take around 80 days to complete, with Hamp leaving the country almost immediately following a guilty plea, or upon serving 18 months in prison if she pleads innocent and is found guilty; there are no plea bargains under said system."

foreignprisoners/news-japan/ reports on conditions of foreign prisoners in Japan:

[from a story about a foreign prisoner named Woodland]

Substitute prisons [i.e. detention cells in police stations]
Bar associations and human- rights groups in Japan are critical of daiyo-kangoku — what is known as the substitute prison system. A substitute prison is a police station cell where suspects may be detained, prior to indictment, up to 23 days after arrest.
JFBA calls these substitute prisons “one of the most peculiar detention systems in the modern world.”
Lengthy interrogations, that sometimes turn violent, are a product of the substitute prison system, JFBA maintains.
Investigators often questioned Woodland from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m, with a break for lunch, while he was detained at the police station, said Annette Eddie-Callagain, Woodland’s American attorney in Okinawa.
Interrogations are not regulated by law and can last 12 to 16 hours a day, Morihara said. Defense lawyers cannot be present, and interrogations are not usually recorded.
In a written response to a Stripes inquiry, Japan Ministry of Justice officials said measures to protect suspects’ rights during interrogation are considered. These include meal and break times, and a limit of 23 days in pre-indictment detention; torture and cruel punishments are absolutely forbidden, and suspects are notified they have the “right to remain silent."
Hostage justice
Japan’s Code of Criminal Procedure provides for “bail as a statutory right,” but Japan bar association members say this a hollow promise.
“While a suspect in a Western country usually faces trial while released on bail, more than 80 percent of suspects in Japan face trial while still in custody,” they said. “Under these circumstances, the so-called right to bail in Japan is far from being a right.”
Morihara said if a defendant denies a charge, it’s impossible to get bail. The suspect’s silence or denial is seen as a tendency to destroy evidence or talk to witnesses if released. In effect, it becomes a tool for coercing confessions.
“We call this system ‘hostage justice,’ JFBA wrote in a 1998 report to a United Nations Human Rights Committee.
Criminal laws also provide that a suspect may be detained if there is sufficient reason to believe he may destroy evidence.
In 99.4 percent of cases, the court grants the prosecutor’s request to detainment before indictment.
After indictment, roughly one in five suspects is released on bail, according to Amnesty International figures.
Prosecutors, Government of Japan officials said, screen a case carefully before indictment
A court-appointed attorney is not approved until after indictment, and suspects must rely on their own resources to hire an attorney before they’re formally charged. Local bar associations may provide detainees with a free counseling session prior to indictment.
“Defense lawyers don’t come into play until it’s too late,” said Eddie-Callagain.
Woodland has two Japanese lawyers, as well as Eddie-Callagain. Last month the Naha District Court in Okinawa denied Woodland bail.
Eddie-Callagain believes one reason her client’s request was turned down is because he has not confessed.
Confessions aren’t sought as much for evidence as an expression of moral repentance, which investigators see as necessary for rehabilitation and reintegration into society, JFBA said.

Japan’s Constitution does not compel criminal suspects to make a self-incriminating confession, yet about 90 percent of all criminal cases going to trial include confessions, says a 1998 U.S. State Department report on human rights in Japan.

If Julie pleads innocent and is found guilty, Tochigi Prison awaits her.

Tochigi is a regular women's prison which is also designated to hold foreigners. Housing over 400 prisoners...the prison is organized along the same lines as Fuchu [mens] Prison, though the overall regime is less harsh. 

Tochigi Prison offers training for beauticians, (Japanese) typists and seamstresses. The beauticians provide limited hairdressing facilities for their fellow prisoners.

A Typical Day At Tochigi
06:30 Rise 
06:50 Roll-call 
07:15 Breakfast 
07:50 Resume work 
09:30 Break time 
09:45 Resume work 
12:00 Lunch 
12:20 Break time 
12:40 Resume work 
14:30 Break time 
14:45 Resume work 
16:20 End of work 
16:30 Dinner time 
17:00 Roll-call/Free time 
20:00 May lie down 
21:00 Sleep

Tochigi prison.