Man in Japan gets suspended sentence for confining mentally ill son in cage

A man in the western Japan city of Sanda received a suspended sentence Wednesday for illegally confining his mentally ill son in a wooden cage for years at their home. The Kobe District Court sentenced Yoshitane Yamasaki, 73, to 18 months in prison, suspended for three years, for locking his 42-year-old son in the small cage. Built in a prefabricated hut, the cage measured 1 meter high, 0.9 meter wide and 1.8 meters long, Kyodo reports. According to presiding judge Kimikazu Murakawa, the defendant did not make sufficient efforts to find alternative means to deal with his son and “significantly hurt his dignity” by keeping him in the cage. However, the judge cited a lack of social support for people like the defendant’s son in handing down the suspended sentence.