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Forced De-Conversion Victim Statements


Hiroko Tomizawa

Confined: June 3,1994 – September 15, 1995

Faith-breakers: Mamoru Takazawa, Takashi Miyamura, Atsuyoshi Ojima

WRITTEN STATEMENT

October 2, 1998

Profile
I was the victim in the Tottori Church assault incident, in which I was abducted and subsequently confined for about one year and three months.
I was born on  April 15, 1966, to Sukio and Mitsuko Tomizawa. I have younger brother, Yasunari, and younger sister, Yoko. I first joined the Unification Church in Osaka in October 1988 but left it in March 1990. I rejoined the church in Tottori Prefecture in November 1992.

The first confinement  

On June 3, 1994, upon returning from my work at a kindergarten, my family invited me for dinner. I got in the family's car but, contrary to my expectation, they took me to a third-floor room of an apartment complex called 'Sun City Yonago' in Yonago City. There, I was detained for almost 80 days, until August 24.

The room was tightly locked, with the entrance door chained and padlocked; it was very hard to open without the specific key. The glass door to the porch was also firmly shut with bars to prevent going in and out. Pastor Katsunori Kaido showed up to talk to me for deprogramming.

Around mid-August, I made up my mind to die through fasting. Then, my father said, "Please listen to the pastor, and I shall unlock the door!" Amid the lax security, I could escape from the apartment in the early morning of August 24.

Assault incident in the Tottori Church

On June 7, 1997, at 2:00 PM, I asked my mother to come to the Tottori Church, where we met with a church member Tsurue Fukuda. Around 2:30, a group of people including my father and brother assaulted the church and abducted me into van.
On the way, my brother received a phone call from Mamoru Takazawa, pastor of the Kobe Makoto Church. My father gleefully reported to the pastor about the successful operation.

As I had heard about a former Tottori Church member, Chikako Morimoto, who had been confined by that very pastor, I became convinced that this  pastor was involved in my abduction.

Confinement

The  van stopped at a hotel near the seashore and I was taken indoors to a room. Staying at the hotel were my parents, younger brother and sister, unknown women and two private detectives. My father slept on a futon laid in front of the entrance door.

The next day, one of the detectives applied a special apparatus on the entrance so that it would not open easily. The same day, someone called "Boss” came to inspect the situation. He called the two detectives "Tsukamoto" and "Shirai.".

On June 9 at about 10:30 PM, I was handcuffed in the hotel by one of the detectives. He applied  one ring on my arm and another on my father's. I was taken out of the hotel, put into the van and brought to Osaka. The car stopped in front of an apartment, where an unknown stout man was waiting.

I was escorted to a 10th-floor room, No.1006. Coming out of the elevator toward the room's entrance, I was struck by such a strange smell that I could not open my mouth to scream "Help me!" The door was chained with two sets of padlocks, which could not be opened without a special key. The window was also tightly locked, with iron wires binding the lock.

The next day Pastor Takazawa showed up and spoke for about an hour. He rebuked me with abusive language, like "You slug!" and "you rat in the attic" or "a dying cockroach." He came to the place virtually every day for the first week. Then his visits became less frequent, to every other day and finally once or twice a week.

Whenever Pastor Takazawa came, he used to hit my back or knees very hard. Also, someone called Heizaburo Ohe came three days a week. A total of eight former church members were apparently directed to visit me. Pastor Takazawa admitted that he had seven people under his custody at the same time. At one point, he questioned me, saying, "How many apartment keys do you think I have?"

After early July, my body suffered from psychosomatic stomach aches, which would last throughout the confinement. Toward the end of July, I had urinary bladder inflammation. Even then, Pastor Takazawa refused to take me to a hospital.

In July or August, my father was interrogated at the Tottori Police Station. Upon returning, my father said, "Everything is all right!" I had anticipated my liberation when I learned about my father's interrogation. But no words came from the police.

After August, unless he had business trips, Pastor Takazawa visited me a couple of times per week, uttering harsh words of criticism of the Unification Church doctrines, its founder and activities.

In early September, we were to move to the eighth-floor room (No.801) of the New Osaka City Corp. For the relocation, Pastor Takazawa's own son, Naoki Takazawa, drove a vehicle. Like the previous apartment, two padlocks were attached on the entrance door, making it hard to open without special keys retained by my father. The window lock was bound with iron wires. When this apartment room would later be vacated, Pastor Takazawa boasted that he had devised those apparatuses.

Either around September's end or in early October, Pastor Takazawa spoke about his participation in a meeting among anti-UC ministers in Tokyo. According to him, one pastor, reading an article in Chuwa Shimbun, one of the Unification Church publications, about the Tottori incident, commented angrily: "Who on earth did such an act? This makes our activities more difficult! Leave such things to the parents!" Then, Pastor Takazawa dared to declare that he had carried it out. He was blamed by most of the participants except Takashi Miyamura, who supported Takazawa, saying, "I would have done the same thing!"

Around February 1989, Pastor Takazawa told me about confining one couple. He explained that he had not previously dealt with couples, but as it turned out to be viable, he started working on both husband and wife at the same time. Eventually, both husband and wife lost their UC faith. The husband, Mr. Tamura from Kochi Prefecture, was brought to my confinement site.

Around  March 9. 1998, Takashi Miyamura came to my confinement place with two former church members. Miyamura attacked the Unification Church with very harsh words. Seeing no way out unless I faked a departure from the church, I said, "OK. I will quit!"

Confinement continued even after quitting

Even after my declared departure from the church, the confinement went on. Both Pastor Takazawa and Mr. Ohe bombarded me with abuse against the Unification Church whenever they came. The manager of the Aoya Lutheran Church, Atsuyoshi Ojima, visited me once every 10 days, pouring out many rebukes about the Unification Church.

Probably in March, Pastor Takazawa confided in me and said that I was the 408th on the list of those deprogrammed by him! He disclosed that there were 40-some people whom he had failed to deprogram owing to their escape or faked departure from the faith.

I’m unclear about the timing, but Pastor Takazawa told me about his confinement of a female member of a religious group called Seien Kanki Kyo. Takazawa said that, when she was about to be released, he threatened her by saying, "In case you return to the group, you shall be thrown into confinement once again!" Subsequently, she lodged a complaint to the Kobe Police, who reported to Takazawa that they did not take up the matter as they learned of his involvement in the case.

In May 1988, for the first time since my confinement, I was allowed to visit a hospital called Kojitsu Hospital, to which my parents and Ojima accompanied me as guards. The doctor pointed out my excessively fair skin, advising me to do more physical exercise. I also underwent a few medical tests before going back to the apartment. The following day, I went to the hospital again under the surveillance of my parents and Ohe. Through the gastro-endoscopy, I was pronounced to have gastroptosis and weak peristaltic motion.

In June or July, Pastor Takazawa spoke about his communication with a policeman by the name of Mr. Sugawa in Kobe. He also explained that as few people in the Tottori Police were informed about the Unification Church, he requested the Kobe Police to enlighten the police officers in Tottori.

Around July, Pastor Takazawa boasted that he had deprogrammed successfully 18 UC members through the confinement method in a previous year. He also said that he had already deprogrammed some 20 members (the current?) year. In early August, I went to the Kojitsu Hospital together with my parents and Pastor Takazawa. I was pronounced to be developing a hernia.

Around August 8, Pastor Takazawa told me that my brother had been summoned several times by the police.

On August 15 Pastor Takazawa explained to me, "Because a criminal case ended up in a draw, the Unification Church is now lodging a civil case." I responded to him by saying "Their terrible behavior deserves it!" and proposed to submit a written renunciation of faith. Then, Pastor Takazawa said, "You will do it, won't you?" in a satisfactory tone.

“Rehabilitation” at the Kobe Makoto Church

On August 30  I was moved from the apartment to the Kobe Makoto Church, where I was to spend a two-month rehabilitation on its second floor. My parents stayed on the ground-floor room next to the main hall. Several former UC members were undergoing a similar "rehabilitation": two women and three men.

At that time, a total of seven people were confined in the apartment. Two of them were a couple (not the Tamura pair mentioned before). This couple's child is being taken care of by their kin, disregarding the couple's desires.

Adjacent to the Aoya Lutheran Church to which Ojima belongs, there was a house used for study sessions of the UC members' parents. While I was undergoing  rehabilitation, three groups of members' kin came to the Kobe Makoto Church for consultation about their children. They were taken care of by Pastor Takazawa, Yoshiko Takazawa, Vice Pastor Suzuki and Ojima, as well as my parents.

In early September, I weighed only 41 kg, down from my average 47 kg. In my worst moment during the confinement, I weighed only about 30 kg.

Escape

On September 15 at 2:25 PM, as other people went out and I happened to be left alone, I left a memo and escaped from the apartment.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 06 July 2011 20:09