Nagoya man arrested after crossing prefectural lines to perform illicit act with elementary school student.

Once, while driving through a shadier part of Southern California, I saw a billboard that showed a man in a jail cell. Written next to him, in a gigantic font, was the message “’But she looked 18′ is no excuse.”

While the number may be different, the result has turned out to be the same for a 46-year-old man from Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture. A resident of the city’s Midori Ward, he was arrested as a part of an undisclosed incident in February, and during the investigation officers found photos of a naked girl on his smartphone. The police were able to determine that the photos were of a 12-year-old girl, in her sixth year of elementary school, whom the man had met online through a video uploading service. In January he traveled to Ehime Prefecture, where he had sex with the girl in a hotel.

Although the man has admitted to the charges, he didn’t know the girl was so young. However, his margin of error was extremely thin, as he told investigators “I had intercourse with her, but I thought she was 13.”

While Japan’s age of consent being 13 is a legal tidbit that’s bandied about with alarming frequency on the Internet, what’s often overlooked is that 13 is the age set by federal law. Prefectural criminal codes generally supplement this with additional laws forbidding sexual or lewd acts in which one person is above 18 and the other below, which is the case in Ehime Prefecture, meaning the man was going to end up in trouble either way. So in addition to the legal troubles that got the man arrested in the first place, he’s now looking at statutory rape charges as well.

Source: Yahoo! Japan News/Tokai TV via Jin
Top image: Pakutaso