Bodies in suitcase sisters were well-known hookers

Chinese sisters found dead in suitcases were known in Yokohama’s red light district

Two Chinese sisters who were strangled and whose bodies were later dumped in July were known in Yokohama’s Isezakicho red light district, according to media reports.

The bodies of 25-year-old Chen Baolan and Chen Baozhen, 22, from Fuzhou, were discovered on July 13 in suitcases alongside a road about 40km from the flat they shared in the city. Autopsies showed that both women had died of strangulation, reported the Shukan Jitsuwa tabloid magazine.

Police have arrested Tatsuya Iwasaki, 39, on charges of illegally disposing the bodies while a murder case is built against him.

Chen Baolan first arrived in Japan in 2009 on a student exchange programme, while her younger sister arrived in 2012 and was studying game software programming, according to the Tokyo Reporter website.

But Shukan Jitsuwa reported that the two women were also working at a club in Yokohama’s Isezakicho red light district that permitted clients to take female employees to nearby hotels. They were known locally as the “beautiful Chinese sisters”.

Chen Baolan reportedly met Iwasaki through the club about five years ago and asked his advice on how she might manage to avoid getting into trouble with the immigration authorities. Iwasaki, who was already married, allegedly suggested that they register a fake marriage to enable her to remain in Japan.

Police have obtained security camera footage of a man – believed to be Iwasaki – entering the women’s flat at 1am on July 6. He left about nine hours later, but returned the following day and left carrying a suitcase. On a subsequent visit to the property, he left carrying plastic bags.

Police found the suitcases containing the women’s remains after accessing the GPS in Iwasaki’s car.

Iwasaki has refused to cooperate with the police investigation.

The father and brother of the two women have been in Japan to claim their remains. – SCMP

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