A package in the mail
I would like to submit a story about what happened to
me in Japan, maybe it could help somebody.
A package came to our house one day which was
addressed to somebody we didnt know. Despite turning
the package away we were raided by police and customs.
It turns out the package had 400grams of hashish
inside of it.
Although we didnt know anything about the contents
three of us were arrested for possession.
I had 1.3 grams and my friend had 0.3 grams in our
rooms. My boyfriend was also arrested for simply
being at my house at the wrong time.
Two others that lived in our flat were not arrested as
they were not in possesion, even though their urine
tests came out positive. The police in Japan need two
eye witness statments from people saying they have
seen somebody smoke to make an arrest if there is no
We were interrogated, tied to chairs, abused, strip
searched, put under a non-communication order for
twenty days. Our friends didnt come to see us and our
mail was searched and some confiscated. They
threatened us with jail for upto 5 years and told us
they suspected us of smuggling. My urine test came up
negative for anything but in order to be not sent to
prison for smuggling I had to take responsibilty for
the 1.3 grams found in my room. For those of you who
are not aware of it, 1.3 is about the size of one
After 2 months at Narita airport I was sent to
Chiba detention centre which is the most horrible
place on earth. The only sound you can hear at night
is the sound of people crying. You are not allowed to
smile, wave or look at another living soul. According
to human rights treaties every prisoner in the world
is allowed one hour a day of exercise. In Japan you
are allowed one hour a week, providing it is not
raining. You may only send one letter a day. Wake up
is at 6.45 am and until 6.00pm you may only sit
quietly. If you do make noise or try to make contact
with another inmate (which is impposible anyway) you
are threatened and bullied by guards. I am vegetarian
but they told me because I am white and I dont have a
religion I must eat meat. By refusing to eat meat I am
trying to disobey orders and am likely to be punished.
I lost 10kg in 3 months.
The prosecution demanded 6
months imprisonment with hard labour as I had admitted
to my investigating detective that I had smoked
Marijuana in my own country before. My friend only
had one trial and was sent back to New Zealand. They wouldn't let me
know what had happened to her and hid her letters to
me until after my first trial.
After my second trial
they finally released me in Japan on a 3 year
suspended sentance. When they pushed me out of the
Chiba detention centre gates I could barely walk.
They didnt tell me my rights or even explain what a
suspended sentence was. My friend who was caught with
0.3 grams was deported with a 20 year ban.
Apparently, everybody that the prosecution demands
under three years imprisonment for is entitled a
suspended sentence by Japanese law.
female, New Zealand