This news about the Japanese court verdict on the defendant’s appeal based on cannabis psychosis was published on Wednesday 9/30/2020 7:54 PM TV Kansai
After an appeal hearing, a court in Osaka, Japan convicted a man with a suspended sentence. He had allegedly attacked a woman under the influence of cannabis psychosis.
Defendant Naoya Tateishi (36) was prosecuted on a count of injuring and attempting forcible sexual conduct on an in-home nurse. The alleged assault took place two years ago at an apartment complex in Kadoma City, Osaka Prefecture.
In February 2020, the Osaka District Court ruled that the defendant had used cannabis in the past and that he was in a state of mental distortion. He had been experiencing hallucination due to cannabis psychosis, or “cannabis mental illness,” and often heard voices inside his head urging him to “do it, do it.” Originally sentenced for 6 years while the court convicted him to three years in prison while suspending the sentence for 5 years.
The defense in response pleaded not guilty and filed an appeal.
The Appeal based on cannabis pyschosis
Psychiatrist Hirofumi Kariyama, the Deputy Director at Kumeda Hospital Department of Psychiatry, describes cannabis psychosis as “a state of hallucinations, delusions, and psychosis caused by abuse of cannabis.”
In the appeal decision on October 30th, Osaka High Court confirmed the effect of cannabis psychosis on the defendant, stating “while we’re not able to say his actions were completely overtaken by hallucinations, his mental capacity in controlling his behaviors was significantly diminished.”
However, the court dismissed the appeal and proceeded to sentence Tateishi to three years in prison and five years suspended sentence.
Review from the Translator
Disbelief. Embarrassment. Disappointment.
These and a few other choice words went through my head as I read this news from the Land of the Rising Sun.
Sure, cannabis is not all rainbows and sunshine. Yes, the potential negative effects of cannabis do need attention. But to downplay an attempted sexual assault, essentially because cannabis “made him do it”, sounds farfetched at best and, incredibly dismissive of the victim’s well being. Unfortunately, Reefer Madness is alive and well in Japan. However, I’m hopeful that this atmosphere can change for the better, especially as more information becomes readily available from all over the world.