1970: Akira Nishiguchi, Vengeance Is Mine inspiration

1 comment December 11th, 2011 Headsman

On this date in 1970, Japanese serial killer Akira Nishiguchi was hanged for murder.

Born in 1925, Nishiguchi (English Wikipedia entry | Japanese) spent the war years in juvenile detention but emerged in time to work as an interpreter for the U.S. occupation.

He was arrested repeatedly (Japanese link) as a con man during the 1950s. Police had him pegged as a nonviolent serial fraud artist, but in 1963 he killed two drivers to steal from them, then went on the run in Tokyo.

For 78 terrifying days, his face — those fraud convictions came with fingerprints that identified him as the killer — gazed out of wanted posters as Nishiguchi scraped by in cheap hotels and desperate disguises, committing three more murders in the process. Finally, an 11-year-old girl recognized him, posing as a lawyer.

Nishiguchi is the subject of the 1979 Shohei Imamura film Vengeance Is Mine. (Review | Another)

On this day..

Entry Filed under: 20th Century,Arts and Literature,Capital Punishment,Common Criminals,Crime,Death Penalty,Execution,Hanged,History,Japan,Murder,Serial Killers

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