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The Harsh Reality Of Americans Getting Arrested In Japan

Okabe & Haushalter Nov 3, 2017 International

Many Americans often complain about our nation’s legal system. Although it is not always perfect, it is often easy to take for granted when traveling to a foreign country. In the United States, those accused of a crime are presumed innocent until proven guilty. But in some countries, it is often in reverse. Japan is not only one of the most popular countries for Americans to travel, it also an international hub for business and trade. But what if you were arrested or accused of a drug crime or white-collar crime in Japan? The first important step is to seek representation from a high-end international criminal defense attorney.

The Differences Between Japanese and American Criminal Law

There are many similarities between the United States and Japan. Both countries have democratically elected governments. American culture is also very popular in Japan. It is not unusual to see many American restaurants, brands and businesses in the Far East. But the laws governing the people are not always the same–especially when it comes to criminal law.

  • Those who are arrested in Japan are viewed as guilty by law enforcement: The Japanese criminal justice system has one of the highest conviction rates in the world at 99 percent. Those who plead innocence of a drug crime, gun crime or a violent crime can expect to be treated much harder during interrogation. The admission of guilt is seen as remorse,
  • Your rights in Japan are limited: The Japanese legal system is designed to assure law enforcement triumphs in any legal dispute. For example, when a person is charged with a crime in the United States, they are immediately read their Miranda rights by the arresting officer. Those rights do not exist in Japan. During the interrogation process, you will not be permitted to have an attorney present. Those arrested could face the possibility of being detained for up to 48 hours. In some extreme cases, a suspect could spend 23 days in jail without even being charged with a crime.
  • Criminal defense attorneys in Japan have a bad reputation: Japanese defense attorneys work on a flat fee basis and then charge additional fees for any subsequent legal services.
  • Bail Is a rarity: Japanese citizens are rarely granted bail when charged with a crime. It is even worse for Americans or other foreign nationals.
  • Do not expect help from the American Embassy: When a foreigner is arrested in the United States, they often turn to the nation’s embassy for legal assistance or asylum. Because Japan is considered a “friendly” country to the United States and has its own sovereignty laws, an American charged with a crime is considered a threat and will not be allowed to make contact with their native government.

The Importance of High-End International Criminal Defense

Criminal defense in Japan is not cheap. For example, if you are arrested for assault, it is possible to avoid prosecution. However, you must pay a fine the equivalent of $10,000 U.S. dollars or 1 million Japanese yen. It is vital to have an experienced team of high-end international criminal defense attorneys on your side. The legal team at Okabe & Haushalter is committed to providing aggressive and comprehensive international legal representation. Whether you are an American charged with a crime overseas or a foreign national charged with a crime in the United States, their team of legal professionals can help. They handle cases all over the world. To learn more, contact their Los Angeles criminal defense law office today and schedule a consultation to discuss your case.