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World War II Pacific Theater Case Synopses from Judge Advocate's Reviews Yokohama Class B and C War Crimes Trials

    Abe Tatsuo,civilian guard, Fukuoka, Japan

  • Docket Date: 31/ May 2-3, 1946, Yokohama, Japan
  • Charge: 1. Committed cruel and brutal acts against POWs
  • Specifications:
  • Verdict: 1 year confinement at hard labor

Reviewing Authority Recommendations: 1. Recommender concurred with the commission's finding of guilty of the accused for the entire charge of Specification 3 - did not believe that the accused only slapped the prisoner.

Reviewing Authority: Paul E. Spurlock, Reviewer, Judge Advocate Section

Prosecution Arguments:

Defense Arguments: 1. Accused looked out for the welfare of the prisoners over and beyond what was called for. 2. Did not receive instructions about the treatment of prisoners of war as set forth by the Geneva Convention, nor did he know about Japan's agreement until after cessation of hostilities. 3. Did not carry out the punishment of prisoners forced to stripped in order to confess who had traded accused's watch for food.

Judge Advocate's Recommendations: Defense objection to official communication between Japan and the U.S. was properly overruled because "it was admitted into evidence to be considered insofar as the commission could determine its effect in relation to the laws of war." What does this mean? I'm not sure how it is supposed to apply.

Child Testifying in Court in Manila.
Photo: U.S. Army, courtesy of Bob Harmon

The trial records of Japanese War Criminals Tried at Yokohama, Japan, between 1946 and 1949 is broken into 2 sets:

  1. 59 reels - Records of Trials and Clemency Petitions for Accused Japanese War Criminals Tried at Yokohama, Japan (1946-1948)
  2. 5 reels - Reviews of the Yokohama Class B and C war crimes Trials by the 8th Army judge Advocate (1946-1949)

The following is a summary of the corresponding case found in the latter group (5-reel set of Judge Advocate's Reviews). Analysis Prepared by Stella Lee Researcher, War Crimes Studies Center

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