Nicola Furlong was murdered 10 years ago in Japan – but her killer is about to walk free

independent.ie -- May 22
This Tuesday, the family of Nicola Furlong will privately mark 10 years since their beloved 21-year-old daughter and sister was cruelly murdered in Tokyo.

The DCU student from Wexford, who was studying in Japan for a year, was killed by an American man after a night out at a concert with her friend.

Compounding her family’s grief on this milestone anniversary is the knowledge that her killer, Richard Hinds, is due to be released from prison within months.

The circumstances of Nicola’s murder, and Hinds’s subsequent criminal trial, shocked the Irish public.

On May 24, 2012, Nicola Furlong had been enjoying a night out with her friend at a Nicki Minaj concert — when a chance encounter with two American men led to her death.

Hinds was found guilty of her murder in March 2013. The then 19-year-old was given a sentence of a minimum of five years and a maximum of 10 with labour. The keyboard player has now been imprisoned for nine and a half years.

In accordance with the legal requirements of his sentence, he must be released and then deported back to the US by November of this year.

Passing sentence in 2013, the chief judge told the court that Richard Hinds showed “no remorse” and “tainted the honour” of his 21-year-old victim.

The trial heard Nicola had a date-rape drug in her system at the time of her death.