4 young Japanese found dead in apparent group suicide

Four young Japanese have been found dead inside a sealed car in an apparent group suicide, a local police official said Tuesday, the latest additions to the country's alarmingly high suicide rate. A passerby called police after finding the bodies of the four men in the vehicle on a road in a sparsely populated, heavily wooded area in mountains near Yugawara, a town in Kanagawa prefecture (state) Tuesday morning, police official Akio Tada said. The car doors were locked, the windows sealed with tape and a charcoal stove was inside, leading investigators to suspect suicide, Tada said. Charcoal stoves, which emit carbon monoxide fumes that cause asphyxia in sealed areas, are frequently used in group suicides in Japan. Police found cell phones and other personal belongings that they are using to try to establish the identities of the men, who appear to have been between their mid-20s and mid-30s, Tada said. No notes were found, he added.