7-Year Term Sought for Elderly Driver over Fatal Tokyo Accident

Society

Tokyo, July 15 (Jiji Press)--Public prosecutors demanded a prison term of seven years on Thursday for a 90-year-old former senior Japanese government official over a high-profile fatal runaway car accident in Tokyo in 2019.

"The mistake in basic driving operations was gross negligence," the prosecutors said during the man's trial at Tokyo District Court, seeking the maximum prison term set for negligent driving resulting in death and injury.

In the accident, the car driven by Kozo Iizuka ran out of control in the busy Ikebukuro district of Tokyo's Toshima Ward in April 2019, killing a woman, 31, and her 3-year-old daughter. Nine others were injured.

In its closing argument, the defense side claimed that the man is not guilty as the accident was caused by a vehicle defect, not the fault of the driver. The court is slated to issue a ruling on Sept. 2.

The prosecutors said that the accident occurred when the man mistakenly pressed the gas pedal instead of the brake pedal, and that there were no mechanical problems with his car.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press