- Title: OPENING OF WAR CRIMES TRIALS, SINGAPORE [Allocated Title]
- Film Number: ABY 195
- Other titles: ROYAL AIR FORCE OPERATIONS IN SOUTH EAST ASIA DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR [Allocated Series Title]
- Summary: The first trials of Japanese war criminals at Singapore get underway.
- Description: General view of the courtroom with the accused filing into the dock; one of them appears to offer a small bow towards the bench as he enters. The judges enter and take their seats. The prisoners in the dock; they wear numbered tags around their necks for identification. The President declares the court open.
- Access Conditions: IWM Attribution: © IWM
- Featured Period: 1939-1945
- Production Date: 1946-01-21
- Production Country: GB
- Production Details: Air Ministry, Directorate of Public Relations (Production sponsor) Royal Air Force Film Production Unit (Production company) Hughes, H R (Production individual)
- Personalities, Units and Organisations: IMPERIAL JAPANESE ARMY (regiment/service)
- Keywords: Singapore (geography) Singapore War Crimes Trials, War Crimes Trials (event)
- Physical Characteristics: Colour format: B&W Sound format: Silent
- Technical Details: Format: 35mm Number of items/reels/tapes: 1 Footage: 126 ft; Running time: 2 mins
- HD Media:Yes
- Notes: The men seen in the dock stood accused of causing the death of Indian prisoners of war. Their trial took eleven days, and eight of the ten were found guilty, one of them receiving a death sentence. They are named on the dopesheet for corresponding Army film as follows: Captain Gozawa Saidachi. Captain Okusawa Ken. Lieutenant Kamiyuki Nakamura. Sergeant Major Tanno Shozo. Sergeant Major Ono Tadasu. Sergeant Yubi Junichiro. Corporal Osuki Makoto. Corporal Ashiya Tomotsu. Lance Corporal Chiba Masami. The Army dopesheet also names the President as Lieutenant-Colonel Colman, Royal Army Ordnance Corps, the senior member as Major Gay of the Cameronians, and the third as Captain Koli, Indian Army. The prosecutor is named as Lieutenant-Colonel Lazarus and his assistant as Captain Hibbert, both of the Royal Army Service Corps. The counsel for the defence was Lieutenant-Colonel Sleeman of the 15th/6th Lancers, assisted by Major Fairburn of the Rifle Brigade. In the aftermath of the war, the recently-created United Nations established military tribunals to try senior Axis war criminals. The most senior Japanese military and political figures, including Hideki Tojo (commander Kwantung Army and Prime Minister), Koki Hirota (Foreign Minister), Seishiro Itagaki (War Minister) and Heitaro Kimura (commander Burma Area Army) were tried for 'Class A' crimes (crimes against peace) in Tokyo under the International Military Tribunal for the Far East and duly executed. Some 5,700 Japanese were accused of lesser crimes (Class B 'war crimes' and Class C 'crimes against humanity'), were tried and sentenced by courts in other countries. In areas that fell under the responsibility of South East Asia Command, tribunals such as those seen in this film were convened under the authority of the Supreme Allied Commander. From January 1946 to December 1948 the British brought 304 cases against 919 defendants which resulted in 280 death sentences (of which 222 executions), 53 life sentences, 477 other prison sentences, and 105 acquitals. Three of the remaining 4 cases were withdrawn. This occasion also covered by an RAF photographer and by a British Army cameraman. See related items.
- Link to IWM Collections page:
Related IWM Collections Objects:
JFU 454 (JAPANESE PRISONERS BEFORE OPENING OF SINGAPORE WAR CRIMES TRIALS [Allocated Title]) JFU 469 (OPENING OF SINGAPORE WAR CRIMES TRIALS - TRIAL OF GOZAWA SADAICHI [Allocated Title]) JFU 535 (EXECUTION OF JAPANESE WAR CRIMINALS AT CHANGI JAIL SINGAPORE [Allocated Title]) JFU 536 (EXECUTION OF JAPANESE WAR CRIMINALS AT CHANGI JAIL SINGAPORE [Allocated Title]) JFU 537 (EXECUTION OF JAPANESE WAR CRIMINALS AT CHANGI JAIL SINGAPORE [Allocated Title])