Man from Ghana Dies After Being Restrained by Immigration Officers

December 30, 2010

Since this story has already been covered in the English language media, I’ll just provide the basic story, but this is yet another tragedy that seems like it could have been avoided.

Although no external signs that the death resulted from the detainment, the man had been handcuffed and gagged with a towel. I am not sure if this is standard operating procedure for immigration officers, but I certainly hope not.

The Ghanaian man, Abubakar Awudu Suraj, was 45 years old and reportedly resisted deportation at Narita Airport on March 22 of 2010.

Hopefully we’ll get some more information on whether the cause of death was related or not. I expect the immigration officers involved to argue that there was “no direct relationship between the restraint and the death”, that “they follows standard procedures”, or something similar. As always, I just hope the media decides to follow up on this story.

The Japan Probe blog has some news video of the story embedded here.

It’s also been reported on the news site.


1 Dave January 2, 2011 at 8:20 am

Wow. Am sincerely doubting that anything else will get reported in the Japanese media about this, but be sure to post up if there are any updates.

2 jay@newzjapan January 2, 2011 at 9:38 am

All I’ve seen so far are word for word repeats. Some English language stories are reporting that he jumped off a building at the school, but what I’ve read indicates it was his apartment building in Kobe.

I’ll keep checking my google alerts in Japanese and English and follow up if I hear anything.

3 Dave January 2, 2011 at 2:56 pm

Think you’re referring to a different story, Jay.

4 jay@newzjapan January 2, 2011 at 3:03 pm

You’re right Dave… sorry about that.

Nobody didn’t never say I wasn’t crazy, let me tell ya’.