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Saturday, June 16, 2012

Mainali, with family, heads back to Nepal for first time in 18 years

Staff writer

NARITA, Chiba Pref. — Govinda Prasad Mainali, granted a retrial while serving a life prison term for the 1997 slaying of a Tokyo woman, left Friday bound for Katmandu and his first time home in about 18 years.

"I have waited for him for such a long time," Mainali's wife, Radha, 42, told reporters outside the departure lobby before leaving Narita International Airport. "I'm pleased to finally go home with Govinda after 15 years," she said.

"I dreamed of going back home together. I'm happy my dream came true," said his daughter, Mithila, 21.

The first thing they want to do after returning to Nepal is reunite Mainali with other relatives who are waiting for him at home, the family said.

Radha Mainali also expressed concern about her husband's health because she has little information what kinds of food he had in prison. She said she is worried about whether her husband will be able to mentally adjust to daily life in Nepal.

The 45-year-old Nepalese was released from a Yokohama prison on June 7 after the Tokyo High Court ruled the murder case should be reopened, based on DNA testing in July that contradicted the justification for his guilty verdict.

After leaving the Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau's Yokohama branch at around 1 p.m., Mainali took a bus with immigration officials to the airport.

Mainali was in immigration custody after his release from prison because he had been convicted of visa violations. His deportation orders were issued Monday. Later on Friday, Mainali and his family departed for Katmandu via Bangkok.

His presence in the retrial is deemed not necessary. His lawyers have said he plans to sue the government for breach of justice and his 15-year incarceration.

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The Japan Times

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