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HOME  > Past issues  > 2013 December 4 - 10  > Okinawa JCP demands extradition of US Marine hit-and-run suspect
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2013 December 4 - 10 [OKINAWA]

Okinawa JCP demands extradition of US Marine hit-and-run suspect

December 5, 2013
The Japanese Communist Party Okinawa Prefectural Committee on December 4 demanded that the Japanese government call on the U.S. military to hand over a marine who is suspected of drunk driving and a hit-and-run incident.

The suspect is a 29-year-old sergeant assigned to the U.S. Marine Corps Camp Schwab. On November 30, he allegedly drove a car under the influence of alcohol and caused a severe injury to a civilian man in a car accident in Tomigusuku City. As of December 4, the marine, who escaped into the base, is under the custody of U.S. Forces.

Maesato Tamotsu, who is in charge of U.S. base issues with the JCP Okinawa Committee, on the same day visited the Foreign Ministry Okinawa Office and the Okinawa Defense Bureau. Pointing out that a hit-and-run is a serious crime, he urged the Japanese government to demand the extradition of the suspect from the U.S. military.

A Foreign Ministry official showed no intention to make a request for extradition.

Article 17 of the Japan-U.S. Status of Forces Agreement stipulates that if a U.S. suspect is under the custody of the U.S. military authority, he/she will not be transferred to the Japan side before being officially charged.

In 2009, a soldier caused a fatal car accident in Yomitan Village, but he was not handed over to Japanese authorities.

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