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Last Updated: Sunday, 1 April 2007, 07:18 GMT 08:18 UK
Father appeals to Japanese public
Lindsay Ann Hawker
Lindsay Ann Hawker went to Japan to teach five months ago
The father of a British teacher who was found murdered in Tokyo has appealed to the Japanese public to help.

"My daughter's killer has now brought shame on your country. He must be caught, he cannot be allowed to hide away," William Hawker's statement said.

The body of Lindsay Ann Hawker, 22, of Brandon, Warwickshire, was found in a bath of sand on an apartment balcony.

Japanese police are seeking Tatsuya Ichihashi, 28, who lived at the flat. A warrant has been issued for his arrest.

Mr Ichihashi fled when police arrived to question him.

It is believed Miss Hawker had gone to Mr Ichihashi's apartment for the first time on 25 March to teach him English.

When we visited her in Japan she was proud to show us her life here
William Hawker,
Lindsay's father

Japanese police said the post-mortem examination results suggested Miss Hawker had been strangled or asphyxiated. She had also suffered severe injuries to her face and arms.

Mr Hawker's statement was read to reporters in Tokyo by the British ambassador to Japan, Sir Graham Fry, who echoed his appeal for help.

Mr Hawker told the public how his daughter, a recent graduate of Leeds University, had been happy in Japan.

"My daughter loved this country, she loved meeting Japanese people, and thought of Japan as an honourable society, built on trust and respect. When we visited her in Japan she was proud to show us her life here," the statement said.

He said the Japanese police were "making every possible effort" to catch his daughter's killer.

Tatsuya Ichihashi
The suspect fled when police arrived at his apartment

"I still respect this country and its people. I know that you place great importance on family and community links, so as a father I appeal to you - if anyone can help the police to find my daughter's killer, I beg you to come forward," he added.

Sir Graham also made an appeal to the Japanese public "on behalf of the UK government".

"Lindsay's tragic death has saddened and shocked us all," he said.

"We are grateful that the Japanese authorities are doing all that they can, but they will need the help of the Japanese public to catch the criminal, and so I echo the appeal made by Lindsay's father - for anyone that can help; please, please to come forward."

Mr Hawker and his daughter's long-term boyfriend Ryan Garside went to Tokyo last week to formally identify her body.

Mr Hawker previously told a press conference his daughter had researched Japan thoroughly before taking up work as an English teacher, to make sure she knew the dangers.

British ambassador delivers William Hawker's appeal

Hunt for man after Briton's death
28 Mar 07 |  Coventry/Warwickshire
Briton's body found in Japan bath
27 Mar 07 |  Asia-Pacific
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