Defendant: Hirate, Kaichi: Captain of Japanese Imperial Army and Camp
Commander of First Branch Camp at Hakkokate
Docket No./ Date: 4/ Jan. 11, 1946, Yokohama, Japan
Charge: 1. Violation of the Law and Customs of War - unlawfully committed
cruel and brutal atrocities and other offenses against certain Allied
POWs and did unlawfully disregard and fail to discharge his duty as Camp
Commander and restrain the members of his command, permitting them to
commit cruel and brutal atrocities and other offenses against allied POWs
held in said camp.
Verdict: Guilty verdict upheld/ Death by Hanging
Reviewing Authority's Recommendations: Prosecution evidence disclosed
a "concerted and continuous mistreatment" of Allied POWs over
a long period of time resulting in the death of several of them. That
the accused was unaware of the treatment of prisoners cannot be true because
1. He was present at the camp 2. much of the abuse and mistreatment occurred
at prisoner formation out of doors 3. "It is now settled that a commander
is legally responsible and accountable for excesses and violations of
the laws of war committed by the troops immediately under his command."
Reviewing Authority: G. R. Dougherty, Major, A.C., Acting Asst. Staff
Defense Arguments: 1. Denied blatant mistreatment of prisoners - prisoners
were given punishment for offenses 2. Did not know about international
standards nor did he receive instructions in regard to treatment of prisoners
of war prior to assuming command. 3. Superior Orders - followed Japanese
code of treatment of prisoners
Judge Advocate's Recommendations: In the three above cases as well as
this one, the defendants are being found guilty of specific instances
of violations of the laws of war. Vague words such as "many"
in most cases and "other Allied Prisoners of War" when discussing
a specific individuals are being taken out.