FOR LIGHT READING, Download your free copy of “My First Beer” Now with the Smashwords Summer/Winter promotion, ending July 31, 2011
A 32-year-old Japanese man was on Thursday sentenced to life imprisonment for raping and killing British teacher Lindsay Ann Hawker in 2007, before burying her battered body in a sand-filled bathtub.
Tatsuya Ichihashi - who spent more than two-and-a-half years on the run after the 2007 crime and had plastic surgery to evade capture - had admitted raping his English teacher but said he killed her accidentally.
Prosecutors had demanded life for Ichihashi, condemning his crime as 'coarse and extremely self-centered'.
As the presiding judge read out the ruling, a motionless Ichihashi stared at the ground, NTV reported.
Hawker's family - her father, mother and two sisters visiting Japan to hear the verdict - repeatedly wiped tears and nodded many times in approval as the sentence was read out, it said.
Hawker's father Bill had earlier urged the Chiba district court to show 'no mercy' and called for the death penalty - a punishment usually reserved for cases of multiple homicide.
Hawker's parents were also present at Ichihashi's trial, which took place between July 4 and 12, and gave testimony.
Full Story at,