Section 4 Treatment of Inmates Awaiting Judgment, etc.

Inmates awaiting judgment are held separately from sentenced inmates in preventing the spread of bad habits and protecting their privacy.

The treatment of inmates awaiting judgment is designed to prevent them from escaping and destroying any evidence, while respecting their right to defend themselves as a suspect or a defendant, and to ensure appropriate custody of them. They are provided with treatment in their cells both day and night, in principle, and are held in single cells if possible.

Unlike sentenced inmates, inmates awaiting judgment generally use self-supplied clothing and bedding and are given a wider range of freedom to take/use self-supplied food, drink, and other daily necessities, provided, however, that they do not impose any risk to the maintenance of discipline/order and the performance of other administrative duties. Reading books (including magazines and newspapers) is permitted as long as they do not pose any risk of evidence being destroyed or the discipline/order of the institution being violated. Visits and sending/receiving letters can be restricted under the Code of Criminal Procedure and also if there is any risk of evidence being destroyed or it is necessary in maintaining the discipline/order of the institution or the performance of administrative duties. In addition, visits to inmates awaiting judgment are observed by guards, in principle, except for visits from their defense counsels, and the content of letters can also be subject to censorship.

Persons under detention, etc. can be accommodated in detention facilities in place of penal institutions (substitute detention), with thus typically happening with anyone under detention before prosecution. The average daily number of persons detained in detention facilities in FY 2009 was 11,235 (Source: The Correction Bureau, Ministry of Justice).

Persons sentenced to the death penalty in a final judgment are detained in penal institutions separately from other inmates until execution of their sentence. Particular attention is paid to ensuring the mental stability of inmates sentenced to death penalty in a final judgment. In addition, measures such as providing advice and lectures that are considered to contribute to their mental stability are taken in cooperation with private volunteers, as required. As of the end of 2009 there were 104 inmates who had been sentenced to the death penalty in a final judgment (Source: Annual Report of Statistics on Correction).