Defendant: Hada, Masato, Private/Medical Orderly, Fukuoka PW Camp No.
1, Fukuoka Area, Kyushu, Japan
Docket No./ Date: 58/Jan. 28 - Feb. 3, 1947, Yokohama, Japan
Charge: Violation of the laws and customs of war: 1. Did willfully and
unlawfully mistreat, abuse and beat PWs. 2. Did willfully and unlawfully
withhold and refuse to issue and provide available medical supplies to
numerous Allied PWs. 3. Did willfully and unlawfully misappropriate, withhold
and convert to his own use Red Cross supplies.
Specifications: forcing weak and ill PWs to engage in exercises when
physically unfit to do so; requiring PWs to hold buckets of water over
their heads for long periods of time; beating using among others bamboo
stick, stick, cudgel, cane, small riding crop, fists; kicking
Verdict: Life imprisonment
Reviewing Authority's Recommendations: Accused was in charge of the pharmacy:
he refused to give the full prescription of medicine or he tore up the
prescription, refusing to give the prescribed medicine as well as supplies.
Accused was reprimanded for such actions. Accused was in charge of Red
Cross supplies: he consumed them himself, stole them and withheld distribution
to the PWs. Accused directed required calisthenics at the end of every
day: accused forced sick PWs to exercise as well and would beat them if
they could not do so. Accused overruled the PW doctor's opinion and made
his own decisions as to which patients were able to exercise.
Reviewing Authority: Accused had no authority to issue medicine when
requested by a PW doctor formally but in actually, in the absence of the
Japanese doctor, accused would comply with the request for medicine. There
was a shortage of medicine in the camp and Red Cross supplies were all
used for the PWs. Accused had no authority to admit or discharge patients
from the hospital. Accused had no way concerning which patients were or
were not to be exercised. The accused denied striking PWs: accused was
never seen striking PWs. Accused never tore up prescriptions: no complaints
were ever made that accused tore up prescriptions nor did anyone see or
hear about this. If the medicine requested was not in stock, he would
have to go to Fukuoka to buy it and there would necessarily be a delay.
Accused denied ever striking sick PWs; he merely pushed them with it to
warn them. He only carried a stick two times out of the two months he
led exercises; he led exercises at the order of the medical officer. He
only made PWs hold a bucket of water over their head twice but not for
a long time and only because of infractions of the rules. He never took
Red Cross supplies except when given to him as a gift once in 1945.
Prosecution Arguments: Spec.1: Accused was a participant: "The gravamen
of the offense is the assault and the common design renders all of the
assaulting participants equally guilty" (6C.J.S., Sec. 101, P.9595).
Spec 2&4: Evidence insufficient to the portion stating that the act
"contributed" to the death of POWs. "Such an allegation
has the same legal result as alleging that accused directly and proximately
caused the deaths." In these cases where the cause of death is at
issue, it goes beyond the "common experience and knowledge of a reasonable
person" barometer: medical authority is required. For those charges
that could not provide a medical authority's corroboration, the charges
must be stricken of those words. Of all the other specifications not mentioned
of which the accused is found guilty, the evidence was sufficient to support
the findings of the commission. Because the commission found that the
accused "contributed" to the death of "practically every
weak or ill decedent whome he exercised or deprived of medical supplies,"
the Reviewer found that the sentence should be reduced to 20 years CHL.
Defense Arguments: George Gurow, Reviewer, Judge Advocate Section
Judge Advocate's Recommendations: Lt. Col. Allan R. Browne, JAGD, disagreed
with the standard of proof advocated by the Reviewer, George Gurow. He
agreed that specification 4, insofar as it concerned the "allegations
of contributing to deaths should be disapproved" but because it was
a duplication of charges. The Lt. Col. Browne believed that the evidence
in additional specifications 1-5 & 8 was such that amounted to being
sufficient knowledge because they came from "sources qualified by
experience and observation to have knowledge of the facts at issue."
In regards to spec. 2, Lt. Col. Browne found that "the evidence of
non-medical witnesses as to the apparent fatal effect of mitstreatments
need not necessariliy be disregarded if the surrounding facts indicate
that it has probative value to a reasonable person. It may well be of
such character as to be sufficient upon which to base a proper finding
that wrongful actions were the direct and proximate cause of death."
He found that the evidence presented was sufficient not only in this case
but for specification 9. The Lt. Col. believed the commission to have
been lenient in assessing only life imprisonment.