Gunma Police Apologize for Wrongful Arrest of Foreign National

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
The Gunma prefectural police headquarters in Maebashi City, Gunma Prefecture.

MAEBASHI — Gunma prefectural police have apologized for mistakenly arresting a male foreign national in his 20s living in Ashikaga, Tochigi Prefecture, on suspicion of violating the Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Law.

According to an announcement by police on Tuesday, the man caused a car accident in Ota, Gunma Prefecture, on Sunday morning. After police officers from Ota Police Station in the prefecture made inquiries to the Immigration Services Agency about the man’s visa status, they arrested him later on the day on suspicion of illegal residency.

The man, however, denied the allegation, claiming that his visa was in the process of being renewed and that he was not overstaying. When police double-checked the response from the immigration agency, they realized they had overlooked the part indicating that the man’s status was in the process for renewal. They released the man on Tuesday afternoon.

“We apologized to the man,” said an official from the foreign affairs division of the Gunma prefectural police. “We’ll work to prevent such cases from happening again by thorough instruction within the police.”