(urth) "There Are Doors" Comes To Japan
thewynns at earthlink.net
Mon May 23 04:57:45 PDT 2005
Japanese man gets jail time for 'kidnapping' dolls
May 23, 6:12 AM (ET)
TOKYO (Reuters) - A Japanese man has been sentenced to five-and-a-half years
in jail for snatching mannequins used by a cake shop chain to tout its
"Peko-chan," a round-eyed doll around the size of a six-year-old, has been
used by Fujiya Co. Ltd. to sell sweets for five decades and her grinning
countenance is a familiar sight in front of shops around Japan.
Recently, however, she has become a favorite of collectors, leading to a
rash of "Peko-chan" snatchings.
Takeishi Shibuya, 31, was convicted of stealing 15 of the large dolls,
valued at about 1.1 million yen ($10,170), a court official in Yamagata
prefecture, northern Japan, said on Monday.
In several cases, Shibuya used pepper spray and spray paint to fend off
store employees, leading prosecutors to demand a sentence of nine years in
"But he has reflected on his crimes and feels bad about what he did, so the
sentence was lighter as a result," the official said.
After a wave of "Peko-chan" disappearances last year, the company suggested
chaining the dolls down, but customers complained that this would be cruel.
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