Murder of Nicola Furlong

Nicola Furlong (born 17 December 1990 Wexford, Ireland; died 24 May 2012 Shinjuku Ward, Tokyo, Japan) was an Irish female exchange student murdered in Japan.


Nicola Furlong was found dead on May 24, 2012 in Tokyo at the Keio Hotel in Tokyo's Shinjuku ward. She and another Irish exchange student had attended a concert by Nicki Minaj earlier that evening, and remained in Tokyo after missing their train home. Police arrested two American men, 19-year-old Richard Hinds and 23-year-old dancer James Jamari Blackston, who allegedly invited Furlong and her friend for drinks after meeting them at the Nicki Minaj concert. Hinds was subsequently charged with the murder of Furlong.

During their trial in 2013, Hinds claimed he put his hands around Furlong's neck after she refused his sexual advances, and that he had no intention to kill her. However, his version of events was rejected by the prosecution, who claimed that Hinds tried to rape Furlong while she was unconscious, only for her to wake up and scream. Hinds then strangled her. According to police, Furlong's friend was sexually assaulted in the taxi on the way to the hotel while both women were unconscious. Once they arrived at the men's hotel, the hotel provided a wheelchair to take the incapacitated women to the men's rooms. Police said the groping that took place in the taxi was captured on a security camera, as was the entrance of the two women to the hotel in wheelchairs being pushed by the two men.[1][2][3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11][12]


On 19 March 2013, Hinds was found guilty and sentenced to five to ten years imprisonment for the murder of Nicola Furlong.[13][14] Hinds is currently serving his sentence at Fuchū Prison. His release was originally projected for November 2017, but his parole was delayed after authorities deemed that he had "failed to convince authorities that he was remorseful for Nicola's murder."[15] Blackstone was sentenced to and served three years in a Japanese prison for the sexual assault of Furlong's friend.[16]


  1. ^ Spa guide. "Christian musician killed Nicola for refusing sexual advance, say police - National News". Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  2. ^ Spa guide. "Nicola Furlong: Dad lands in Tokyo looking for answers - National News". Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  3. ^ "Japan Murder Arrest: American Teenager Likely to Remain Behind Bars - ABC News". 2012-06-16. Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  4. ^ Spa guide. "Memphis Christian musician Richard Hinds (19) suspected of killing Nicola Furlong - National News". Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  5. ^ "Two American men still jailed in Japan in death of Irish exchange student Nicola Furlong - Crimesider". CBS News. 2012-06-15. Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  6. ^ "Memphis teen Richard Hinds confesses to Nicola Furlong's Tokyo murder | Irish News and Politics spanning the US, Ireland and the World". IrishCentral. Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  7. ^ "Americans Arrested in Death of Irish Student in Tokyo - ABC News". 2012-05-28. Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  8. ^ "Rumors, lies fill void left by police in Furlong case | The Japan Times Online". 2012-06-05. Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  9. ^ "U.S. men held over alleged rape, Irish woman's death | The Japan Times Online". 2012-05-27. Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  10. ^ "U.S. teen in custody formally arrested in Irish woman's slaying | The Japan Times Online". 2012-06-15. Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  11. ^ Kyung Lah (2012-06-15). "American arrested in death of Irish woman in Tokyo hotel room". CNN. Archived from the original on 2012-06-24. Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  12. ^ "A violent death, some justice, few answers in Furlong case - The Japan Times". Retrieved 13 June 2018.
  13. ^ McNeill, David (19 March 2013). "Hinds guilty of murdering Irish student Nicola Furlong: Japanese court sentences US musician to minimum of five years in prison for killing Co Wexford woman in Tokyo hotel room". The Irish Times. Retrieved 19 March 2013.
  14. ^ Murphy, Paul (19 March 2013). "Nicola Furlong family angered at Japanese justice system". Irish Independent. Retrieved 19 March 2013.
  15. ^ " - Connecting People Through News". Retrieved 13 June 2018.
  16. ^ "'It was unfortunate imbroglio all around' – man who sexually abused friend of murdered student Nicola Furlong". Irish Independent. January 4, 2016.

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