Japan executes 3, including serial killer who mutilated young girls

Japan executed three murderers Tuesday, including a serial killer who mutilated the bodies of young girls in the late 1980s in a case that triggered calls for tighter restrictions on violent pornographic videos. Tsutomu Miyazaki, 45, who killed and mutilated four young girls, was hanged at a detention center in Tokyo, said Justice Minister Kunio Hatoyama. The two others executed Tuesday were Shinji Mutsuda, 45, who had been on death row for the murder and robbery of two people, and Yoshio Yamasaki, 73, who was convicted of killing two people for the insurance money, Kyodo News agency reported. Japan, one of the few industrialized countries that has capital punishment, has picked up the pace of executions over the past year amid rising concerns about violent crime.