BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: World: Asia-Pacific
Front Page 
Middle East 
South Asia 
From Our Own Correspondent 
Letter From America 
UK Politics 
Talking Point 
In Depth 

Friday, 6 April, 2001, 09:56 GMT 10:56 UK
Key dates in Lucie investigation
Police near the cave at Miura
The remains of Miss Blackman were found in a cave
The long investigation into the disappearance of Lucie Blackman.

May 4, 2000: Miss Blackman arrives in Tokyo after giving up her job with British Airways to travel around Asia.

July 1: She vanishes after telling a friend she was going out for the afternoon with a man.

July 2: The same friend receives a call from a man calling himself Akira Takagi, who says Miss Blackman has joined a religious cult and would not be seen again.

July 3: Blackman family is told that Miss Blackman has not been seen for two days.

July 4: Her younger sister, Sophie, flies to Japan to try to find her.

July 12: Miss Blackman's father, Tim, 47, arrives in Tokyo.

Lucie Blackman
Lucie Blackman had been missing since July
July 13: Mr Blackman appeals for information, rejecting suggestions that his daughter might have run away to escape credit card debts or that she would willingly have joined a religious cult.

July 15: Mr Blackman meets Foreign Secretary Robin Cook, in Japan for a summit. He urges the Japanese public to help in the hunt.

July 18: Nationwide appeals prompt 100 calls from the public. Mr Blackman and Sophie carry out their own investigations, establishing an office in Tokyo and a confidential hotline, staffed by ex-pats. The family offer a 9,500 reward for Miss Blackman's release, later increased to 100,000 by an anonymous businessman.

July 21: Prime Minister Tony Blair meets the Blackmans during a flying visit to Tokyo and promises to raise the matter with his Japanese counterpart.

August 1: Tokyo police receive a letter from someone purporting to be Miss Blackman, which says: "I am doing what I want so please leave me alone." Detectives and her father dismiss it as a fake.

August 23: A Japanese businessman questioned by police about Miss Blackman's disappearance is reportedly found dead in an apartment with a missing person poster of her.

Tim Blackman
Tim Blackman searched in vain for his daughter
September 1: On Miss Blackman's 22nd birthday her family release balloons. Mr Blackman says police are investigating a tip that Miss Blackman could have been kidnapped and shipped to Hong Kong as a sex slave.

September 3: Miss Blackman's mother, Jane, discloses that Sir Richard Branson has secretly funded a 30-second information appeal to be screened in Japanese cinemas.

September 20: Mr Blackman flies back to England, having spent tens of thousands of pounds in the unsuccessful search for his daughter.

October 11: Police question businessman Joji Obara, now on trial over a series of rapes, over Miss Blackman's disappearance.

November 11: Obara admits having met Miss Blackman but denies playing any part in her disappearance.

February 9, 2001: Police find parts of a body buried in a cave on a beach near Obara's seaside home, close to Tokyo.

February 10: Police confirm that the human remains are those of Miss Blackman, ending a seven-month search by her shattered family.

April 6: Police charge Joji Obara with raping and fatally assaulting Miss Blackman.

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
Internet links:

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Asia-Pacific stories are at the foot of the page.

E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Asia-Pacific stories