Japanese Horror Story: The Torture of Junko Furuta

By:
Vincit Omnia Veritas

Junko Furuta was a 16 year old Japanese girl who underwent 44 days of rape and torture before dying in the hands of her captors on November 22, 1989. Known throughout Japan as concrete-encased high school girl, the case of Junko Furuta  drew nationwide attention owing to sheer brutality the girl had to endure before death found her.

Junko Furuta Story

Junko Furuta attended a high school in Misato, in Saitama Prefecture, Japan. She was a good looking, active teenager who enjoyed a lot of attention and that made some people jealous. She did not smoke, did not drink alcohol and did not do drugs which was seen as very uncool in the eyes of more gangster like teens. One of them – Hiroshi Miyano had a crush on her but not looking for a relationship, Junko Furuta turned him down. Hiroshi Miyano was the bully in the school and being involved with the new generations of the Yakuza, nobody dared to oppose him. And Junko Furuta had the nerve to say “No”…

On November 25, 1988 she was kidnapped by 4 teenage boys – one of them being Hiroshi Miyano. The boys took Junko Furuta to the house owned by the parents of one of the kidnappers in the Ayase district of Adachi, Tokyo.

While in captivity, the kidnapers forced Junko Furuta to call her parents and tell them that she’d run away and is going to stay with a friend, but insist that she’s not in danger. Not able to realize what was coming and too scared to remain non-compliant, Junko did exactly as she was told, ultimately forestalling a manhunt which would have otherwise followed her disappearance.

Parents of Nobuharu Minato in whose house Junko Furuta was kept paid their son a visit on a few occasions but under a threat of increased violence against her, Junko was requested to pretend that she was a girlfriend of one of the boys. However even when it became apparent that she was a captive in the house, the parents did nothing for fear of retaliation from Hiroshi Miyano who was known to have the Yakuza connections.

During the course of 44 days following her kidnapping, Junko Furuta was forced to withstand unspeakable suffering. What she went through before murder included:

  • Was humiliated by being kept naked most of the time
  • Was raped every day in both vagina and anus. More than 100 men are believed to have raped her – the captor with Yakuza connections is said to have invited other Yakuza members to have a go at a 16 year old. She’s estimated to have gone through about 500 rapes. At one point she was raped by 12 different men in one day
  • Endured physical beatings included hits with golf clubs and bashing of face against cement floor
  • The 100 men who are believed to have raped her had also reportedly enjoyed urinating on the girl
  • Frequently, in order to turn her rapists on, she was forced to masturbate in front of them and/or their guests
  • Had various objects forced into her vagina and anus, including a bottle, an iron bar, scissors, roasting needles, grilled chicker skewers, etc.
  • Was provided with only limited supply or food or water
  • Was forced to eat live cockroaches and drink her own urine
  • Had fireworks forced up her ass and set them off, causing serious burns
  • Had her left nipple ripped off with pliers
  • Had dumbbells dropped on her stomach while laid on the floor with hands and feet tied up – this resulted in loss of bowel control
  • Was hanged from the ceiling and used as boxing bag
  • Was kept in a freezer for several hours
  • Had eye lids burned with hot wax and lighters
  • Had breasts pierced with sewing needles
  • Had her vagina and clitoris burnt with cigarettes and lighters
  • Had hot, lit on bulb inserted into her vagina and rubbed until it exploded inside

While she was only one quarter through her ordeal, owing to ongoing beatings, Junko Furuta was unable to breathe through her nose due to accumulation of blood in her cavities. Her traumatized internal organs refused to accept food and water so when she tried to drink, she instantly vomited, which not only kept her more dehydrated, it also agitated the perpetrators who punished her with more beating for soiling the carpet.

At one point, when the attackers were resting after drinking, she tried to call the police but was caught and punished by having her feet set on fire with burning lighter fluid. Large bottle the perpetrators forced up her anus caused internal injuries and ugly bleeding.

Severe leg burns and badly bruised muscles left her unable to walk after 20 days of her ordeal. She wasn’t able to handle anything with her hands anymore because her bones were smashed with weights and her fingernails cracked. Since it was winter, she was also forced to sleep on a balcony, exposed to cold temperatures.

After 30 days, Junko Furuta was unable to urinate properly due to damage to internal organs and to vulva from insertion of foreign object and burns from cigarettes and lighters. Her hands and feet were damaged so badly, it took her over an hour to crawl downstairs to the bathroom. Her eardrums were also damaged and brain size was reduced.

Junko Furuta’s Death

During the course of 44 days when she was repeatedly tortured, beaten and raped, Junko Furuta begged her captors several times to just kill her and be done with it. They didn’t grant her that favor. Instead, on January 4, 1989, they challenged her to a game of Mahjong solitaire. She won and that pissed the boys off so they treated her to a beating with an iron barbell and fire by setting her legs, arms, face and stomach alight after pouring lighter fluid on them. Being already badly beaten, dehydrated and malnutritioned, Junko Furuta fell into a shock and died the following day.

The murderers stuffed the dead girl’s body in a 55-gallon drum filled with concrete and disposed of it in Koto, Tokyo.

Junko Furuta Captors Identified

The names of four main captors who kidnapped, tortured, raped and murdered Junko Furuta were withheld by the Japanese court because they were juveniles, however the journalists from the Shūkan Bunshun magazine dug them out and publish them stating that after what they did to Junko Furuta, they don’t deserve anyone to uphold their human rights:

  • Hiroshi Miyano – 18 year old at the time of the crime. Changed his name to Hiroshi Yokoyama
  • Jō Ogura  – 18 year old at the time of the crime. Changed his name to Jō Kamisaku (神作譲)
  • Shinji Minato (– 16 year old at the time of the crime, some sources refer to him as Nobuharu Minato
  • Yasushi Watanabe – 17 year old at the time of the crime

Jo Kamisaku
Jo Kamisaku
All four perpetrators were caught and tried. However because they were all under-aged when the crime was committed, they were to be tried as juveniles, but eventually faced sentences of adults, except that the court withheld their identities. Still, given the severity of their crimes, the sentences they were handed out were rather low. By now, each of them is already out of jail. Three of the boys served less than 8 years, the leader was originally sentenced to 17 years in prison, but after his appeal, instead of lowering his sentence, judge Ryūji Yanase bumped his sentence to 20 years. The same judge also increased the sentenced for two bore boys who appealed. One didn’t so his sentence stayed as was. Either way, they’re all in their late 30′s and all out of jail.

Jo Kamisaku (not his real name), who was released in August 1999 went back to prison in July 2004 for 7 years for the beating of a guy he thought was luring his girlfriend away from him.

Because forensic examiners found sperm and pubic hair of other people on the corpse of Junko Furuta, few more names were linked to her torture and murder:
  • Kōichi Ihara
  • Tetsuo Nakamura 

Junko Furuta’s Story in Popular Culture

Torture and murder of Junko Furuta sparked international outrage and her case inspired several movies and a manga illustrated by Kamata Youji. The most noteworthy movie is Joshikôsei konkuriito-dume satsujin-jiken  aka Concrete-Encased High School Girl Murder Case which was released in 1995. The movie was directed by Katsuya Matsumura and starred Yujin Kitagawa, member of the band Yuzu as the main culprit.

A 2004 independently produced Japanese film Concrete  is also based on the events leading to the murder of Junko Furuta. At least three books were written by Japanese authors who were inspired by the case. There are some that the whole story behind Junko Furuta’s torture and murder is a hoax but it’s definitely not the case. This horrible crime definitely happened, this is not a hoax.
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