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Man may have been held in cage for over 20 years

Jiji Press SANDA, Hyogo (Jiji Press) — A man with a disability was forced to live in a wooden cage on the premises of his house in Sanda, Hyogo Prefecture, for a long time, possibly more than 20 years, it was learned Saturday.

No notable health damage on the 42-year-old man has been confirmed, but the city government has taken him into protective custody at a welfare facility, suspecting that he may have been abused.

The Hyogo prefectural police received a report about the man from the government in February.

The father of the man, Yoshitane Yamasaki, was arrested on Saturday on confinement charges. He admitted the charges, citing violent behavior of his son, investigative sources said.

The father, 73, allegedly confined his eldest son in a wooden cage about 1.8 meters wide, about 90 centimeters deep and some one meter high between around 10 a.m. on Jan. 18 and around 10 p.m. on Jan. 19.

On Jan. 16, the city government was informed by a welfare worker of a man kept on a short leash, according to government and police sources.

Two days later, municipal personnel visited his house and found a man sitting in a wooden cage inside a prefabricated building next to the house.

In the cage with a padlock, a pet sheet was spread out on the floor and there was something like a blanket, the sources said. The prefab building was equipped with an air conditioner and a heater.

The man is believed to have been kept in the cage since his youth. He had a meal and took a bath in his house every other day, the sources said.Speech

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