Toshikazu Sugaya cleared of murder after 17 years in prison

For more than 17 years, Toshikazu Sugaya, a soft-spoken kindergarten bus driver, lived behind bars, serving a life sentence for the murder of a 4-year-old girl.

On Friday, the 63-year-old Mr. Sugaya was cleared of all charges after a judge acknowledged that he had been bullied by investigators into making a false confession — a practice that critics say is all too common in Japan’s criminal justice system.

It was only the sixth time since World War II that a defendant with a finalized death penalty or life sentence had been acquitted in a retrial, according to Kyodo News.

Read the rest of the story: In Rare Reversal, Japan Clears Man Convicted of Murder

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