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Old 03-18-09, 01:19 PM
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Groom gets cold feet, sets wedding hotel on fire

Groom gets cold feet, sets wedding hotel on fire

TOKYO – A Japanese man who set fire to a hotel in a bid to buy himself time to chose whether to stay with his wife or marry his girlfriend was sentenced to five years jail Thursday, a court official said.


A Japanese man who set fire to a hotel in a bid to buy himself time to chose whether to stay with his wife or marry his girlfriend was sentenced to five years jail Thursday, a court official said. [Agencies]

Presiding Judge Yasushi Watanabe called 40-year-old defendant Tatsuhiko Kawata "egoistic and short-sighted" and dismissed the defence argument that no-one was hurt in the fire, the Kyodo news agency reported.

Kawata, who had been married to his wife since 1994, had also been seeing another woman for about three years and promised to marry her last October at the Risonare hotel in the mountain resort of Hokuto, Yamanashi Prefecture.

However, on the eve of the ceremony, the still-married Kawata sought to delay the ceremony by spilling seven litres of petrol in the hotel and setting it on fire, causing minor damage and forcing the evacuations of several guests.

Prosecutors had sought six years' prison for Kawata, who pleaded guilty to the charges of arson and unauthorized entry to the hotel, a Kofu District Court official said.
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Old 03-18-09, 03:28 PM
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