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2008年11月24日 (月)

元厚生次官襲撃 出頭男の動機が見えない

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Nov. 24, 2008)

Whole story of murders remains unknown

元厚生次官襲撃 出頭男の動機が見えない(1124日付・読売社説)

Takeshi Koizumi, a 46-year-old unemployed man, showed up at the Metropolitan Police Headquarters in central Tokyo on Saturday and said he had killed a former top bureaucrat, referring to knife attacks in which two former vice administrative ministers of the former Health and Welfare Ministry were sequentially targeted.

 旧厚生省の元事務次官2人が相次いで狙われた事件で、46歳の無職の男が「おれが元事務次官を殺した」と言って警視庁に出頭した。

Although the MPD arrested him on suspicion of violating the Firearms and Swords Control Law as Koizumi was in possession of several knives, there are many inexplicable elements in the case. If he is the guilty party, how and why he committed the crimes must be thoroughly ascertained.

 数本のナイフを持っていたため、警視庁はまず銃刀法違反容疑で逮捕したが、不可解な点があまりに多い。動機や犯行経緯の徹底解明が必要だ。

The nation was shocked by the murder of Takehiko Yamaguchi, former health and welfare administrative vice minister, and his wife Michiko in their home in Saitama, and by the attack the following day on Yasuko Yoshihara, the wife of Kenji Yoshihara, another former vice minister in Nakano Ward, Tokyo.

 元次官の山口剛彦さん夫妻が、さいたま市内の自宅で殺害された翌日、東京・中野区内で元次官の吉原健二さんの妻が襲われるという衝撃的な事件だった。

Police said Koizumi admitted to committing the two attacks. He was quoted by police as saying that he was angry because a local public health center had once taken and killed his pet.

 男は二つの事件について犯行を認めており、「以前飼っていたペットを保健所に捕まえられて殺されたことに腹が立っていた」などと供述しているという。

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Confession doesn't fit crime

However, such an explanation does not fit with the commission of such daring crimes as attacking former top bureaucrats in their homes.

 しかし、こんな説明では、とても元次官宅を襲うという大胆な犯罪には結びつかない。

Yamaguchi and Yoshihara both served in the ministry at some point as chief of the pension bureau that devises policies on pensions. Since the administration of both welfare and labor affairs have been criticized, including flaws in the pension system, some people regarded the murders as violent acts against public officials by someone with a grudge against the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry. We wonder what the truth is.

 2人は年金政策を立案する年金局長を務めたこともある。年金記録漏れ問題など厚生労働行政には様々な批判があることから、厚労省に何らかの恨みを抱いた対行政暴力との見方も出ていた。果たして真相はどうなのか。

Yamaguchi and Yoshihara retired from their posts as pension bureau chief in the 1990s. Why did the assassin target two people who are no longer in active service?

 2人が次官を退いたのは1990年代のことだ。現役でもない2人を、なぜ狙ったのか。

Koizumi was born and raised in Yamaguchi Prefecture, and his family said that he came to Tokyo after dropping out of university and working at a computer firm and a parcel delivery service company.

 男は山口県出身で、家族によると、大学を中退後に上京し、コンピューター関連や宅配便の仕事をしていたという。

Such job experiences show no signs of contact with the two former vice ministers nor any political background.

 このような経歴からは、元次官との接点や、政治的な思想や背景はうかがえない。

From the number and severity of the wounds on the victims, police investigators consider that their assailant had extremely strong murderous intent. We wonder where such a distorted sentiment came from.

 執拗(しつよう)に刃物で刺した犯行から、「極めて強い殺意があった」と警察は見ている。そんな歪(ゆが)んだ感情が、どこから生まれたのか。

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Did suspect act alone?

Did Koizumi craft the methods employed in the murders--researching the home addresses of the two former top bureaucrats and disguising himself as a delivery service company employee--by himself or, was there someone who masterminded the attacks? It is also unclear why the man decided to appear at the MPD. Clarifying such elements should be the focus of the investigation.

 元次官の自宅住所を調べ、宅配便を装ってドアを開けさせる手口は、一人で練り上げたのか。それとも、背後で操った人物がいたのか。なぜ出頭する気になったのかも不明だ。捜査では、こうした点の解明もポイントになる。

After the attacks, police officers were assigned to guard social insurance offices across the nation as well as the homes of the ministry's former top bureaucrats. There have also been adverse effects on the business operations of parcel delivery companies, as their staff are viewed with suspicion.

 事件後、全国の社会保険事務所や厚労省の元幹部宅などに警備の警察官が配置された。不審者ではないかと用心され、宅配便の事業にも影響が出ている。

Social anxiety over whether similar incident may occur will not easily disappear.

 類似の事件がまた起きるのではないかという社会の不安は、容易には消えないだろう。

There have been messages posted on the Internet defending the crimes. Some observers point out that a sense of frustration may have incited someone to commit such a crime.

 ネット上には今回の犯行を擁護する書き込みもみられた。専門家には社会の閉塞(へいそく)感が犯行を誘引しているという指摘もある。

The taking of another person's life is never justified, no matter what the circumstances. It is vital for society as a whole to show a resolute attitude against such crimes.

 だが、どんな事情があろうと人の命を奪っていいわけがない。社会全体で毅然(きぜん)とした姿勢を示していくことが大切だ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Nov. 24, 2008)

200811240309  読売新聞)

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