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Last Updated: Monday, 24 March 2008, 16:06 GMT
Hawker murder family renew appeal
Lindsay Ann Hawker's family
Lindsay Ann Hawker met Mr Ichihashi in a coffee shop

The family of a young British teacher murdered in Japan have made a fresh appeal for help to catch her killer.

Speaking in Tokyo, Lindsay Ann Hawker's father Bill called on the "honourable people of Japan" to help find suspect Tatsuya Ichihashi.

The teacher's sister Lisa called on the suspect - whom police believe someone is sheltering - to give himself up.

Mr Ichihashi fled after police found Lindsay's body in a bath of sand at his flat near Tokyo a year ago.

You have taken away my best friend and broken our hearts
Lisa Hawker

Close to tears, Mr Hawker told the press conference: "Almost a year ago my other beautiful daughter, Lindsay, as you know was murdered here in Japan.

"I now wish to appeal to the honourable people of Japan, particularly to the families of Japan, to help me find Tatsuya Ichihashi.

"Be assured the Hawkers will, as a family, never give in...we want justice for my daughter Lindsay."

Her sister Lisa said of the suspect: "You have taken one life and destroyed many more. You have taken away my best friend and broken our hearts. I implore you, please atone for your crime."

Her mother Julia implored the Japanese people to remember Lindsay's face and to keep a look-out for her suspected killer.

"This was my daughter. Remember her face. Remember this face," she said.

"And help us get justice for this girl - that she so rightly deserves."

Before leaving for Japan, Mr Hawker described his daughter, 22, as "a beautiful girl who went to the other side of the world to teach English".

He said: "All of Lindsay's family and friends all over the world remain determined to keep up their efforts, and to seek justice for their daughter, sister and friend."

Japanese police poster showing how Tatsuya Ichihashi might look if disguised as a woman
Police say Tatsuya Ichihashi could be disguised as a woman

He added: "She was an amazing young woman, who travelled to Japan to teach.

"She was brutally murdered and this evil man needs to be caught before he strikes again."

A new poster has been compiled showing how the suspect may look disguised as a woman.

Nearly 150 police officers are said to be working on the case in Japan.

Tim Blackman, whose daughter Lucie was murdered in Japan eight years ago, has been advising the Hawker family.

Laying flowers

He told the BBC he believed the family had done the right thing by returning to Japan to highlight the case.

"Unfortunately, we found, and I can only speak from our experience, that very often the efforts that seem to be put in do seem to be very lax in bringing forward any advance in the case," he said.

"And I can't understand why they've got so much information and have been unable to track this guy down.

"I think they still believe he's in greater Tokyo, but I think an appeal to the public at this stage has got to be a really good step forward."

While in Japan the family will also be laying flowers at the scene where Lindsay's body was found, before returning to the UK on Wednesday.

CCTV of the main suspect

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22 Aug 07 |  Coventry/Warwickshire

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