Koji Nagakubo Spills Lies as Reasons for Hostage in an Internet Cafe | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Koji Nagakubo Spills Lies as Reasons for Hostage in an Internet Cafe

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In his high school album, he is pictured piloting a tractor with the amusing phrase, “My Porsche”.Shut up, you son of a bitch!

When the police inquired about the hostage’s safety through the intercom, the man only raised his voice. He made no concrete demands. But when he opened the door himself at dawn, he was taken into custody by the agents who rushed in.


It was the morning of June 21 when the man entered an Internet cafe in Kawagoe City, Saitama Prefecture. Around 10 p.m. on the same day, he broke into a private room where a 22-year-old female part-time worker was cleaning, took her hostage, locked the door from the inside, and holed himself up. The man had a cutter knife.

“Another waiter, who became suspicious when the woman did not return, called 110. The police officers who arrived at the scene led about 20 people inside the store to evacuate. The man did not respond to the police’s persuasion, but was taken into custody about 5 hours later and was arrested in the act on suspicion of arrest and confinement. The woman suffered minor injuries but is said to be in stable condition.”

The suspect, Koji Nagakubo, 42, of unknown address and occupation, was arrested. He admitted to the police that he was fed up with his life and that he wanted to return to prison after the incident.


The suspect, Nagakubo, also committed a stand-in incident in Toyokawa City, Aichi Prefecture, in November 2012. He held five customers and staff hostage at one of the Toyokawa Shinkin Bank’s branches for 13 hours. They were demanding the resignation of then Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda. After his arrest, he was sentenced to 9 years in prison in April 2013. He was released from prison in April of this year.

He is a driver for the Yakuza.

Nagakubo, a suspect sent to the police on June 23.
Nagakubo at the time of his arrest for the November 2012 stand-in incident“FRIDAY” covered a stand-in case in Aichi Prefecture in 2012 in detail. A reporter from a national newspaper who knew the incident at the time said, “Nagakubo is a suspect who has been arrested at various places in Japan.

Nagakubo apparently moved from one rehabilitation facility to another, where he told people that he was abandoned by his parents when he was a child. This story was circulated, and at the time, commentators on wide-ranging TV shows and other media were talking knowingly about how such a family environment might have been the cause of the incident.”

When this reporter visited Hokuto City in Yamanashi Prefecture, where the family actually resides, he found out that this was a complete falsehood. The family home, although somewhat old, was a large two-story house with a large garden. A neighbor said, 

“Koji was born in that house and lived there until he finished school. He was an ordinary child, nothing out of the ordinary. He had four siblings, Koji being the oldest and his grandfather lived with them.”

Not only was he abandoned by his parents at an early age, but he also lived with his grandfather, not to mention his family.

Nagakubo went on to an agricultural high school. In his graduation album, there is a picture of Nagakubo riding on a tractor with a playful phrase, “My Porsche”. He was also a member of the soft tennis club, and from the pictures of those days, he appears to be an “ordinary kid with nothing unusual,” as described by a neighbor.

The turning point came shortly after he entered a university in the prefecture. In an interview at the time, an acquaintance of Nagakubo’s told us, “Nagakubo was 19 years old and a classmate at the university.

He got married to a college classmate when he was 19. They dropped out of school and lived in an apartment as newlyweds, but they divorced shortly after.

After that, he became estranged from his local friends. However, it seems that he still had the same habit of telling lies.” The acquaintance continues.

“When I met him in town 10 years ago (after the incident in Aichi), he blurted out, ‘I’m a yakuza driver.’ If that were true, it would have been talked about locally, but I never heard anyone else talk about it.”

Nagakubo had been involved in theft and fraud cases for several years prior to the Aichi incident, and had been repeatedly imprisoned and released from prison. Despite his release from prison in April of this year, he has once again been involved in a stand-up fight.

He may have meant what he said when he said, “I wanted to go back to prison.” However, it is outrageous that he would involve the general public with his selfish motive.

Photo taken in November 2012, just after the suspect Nagakubo was taken into custody at a credit union in Aichi Prefecture.
  • Photographed by Sato Shigeki, Hasuo Shinji

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