The Gropers of Japan – More than 80% of women say they have been molested on trains

A Japanese railway company may install high-definition security cameras in some Tokyo commuter trains to prevent an epidemic of groping in crowded carriages, a spokesman said Tuesday.

East Japan Railway Co. is considering setting up the cameras in some cars on Tokyo’s Saikyo line, the company spokesman said. The line is notorious for attracting molesters who target women.

Media reported that the cameras will be fixed on ceilings or overhead racks in a pilot project as early as this month, with signs advising travellers that they are under surveillance.

The company official declined to offer details.

Japan’s city trains are infamous for gropers, some of whom exchange tips on Internet forums on how to fondle women or try to sneak revealing photographs of them in a packed carriage.

In 2001, Tokyo began running women-only carriages during rush hours.

Tokyo police handle some 2,000 groping cases each year. More than 80 percent of women say they have been molested on trains, according to a survey by the non-profit Nippon Foundation.

Offenders face up to six months in jail or fines of up to 500,000 yen (5,500 dollars), or 10 years’ jail if they use violence or threats.

Source and Photo: AFP