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Japan fugitive performs self-surgery

Article-Japan fugitive performs self-surgery

Tokyo — A Japanese man, accused of the 2007 murder of a British woman, says in a book he wrote from jail that he essentially performed cosmetic surgery on himself in an attempt to obscure his identity, the Associated Press reports.

“Until the Arrest,” written by Tatsuya Ichihashi and released last month, describes the two-year period during which he was the target of a nationwide manhunt — and obsessed with cosmetic surgery to mask his identity. Arrested in 2009, he is now jailed and awaiting trial later this year.

Ichihashi recounts escaping police who had come to his home to question him. He writes of binding up his nose with a needle and thread afterward to make it narrower, in an attempt to alter his identity.

Ichihashi writes of later trying to cut off part of his lower lip to make it thinner, but having to stop because of the pain. He writes that he finished the “surgery” a few days later. Ichihashi also writes that when he saw a wanted poster of himself, he decided to slice off the facial moles that were prominent identifying features in the photo.

In addition to his self-surgeries, Ichihashi underwent two plastic surgery operations, one to lengthen his nose and another to raise its bridge.

The plastic surgeries led to his arrest, he writes. Staff at one of the clinics noticed the traces of moles that he had excised from his cheek. The clinic reported his visit and sent the photos to police.

Ichihashi was eventually arrested at a ferry terminal in Osaka, Japan, as he tried to flee again.

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