Case 107

Lucie Blackman & Carita Ridgway

*** Content Warning: sexual assault, serial rapist ***

In early 2001, 21-year old Lucie Blackman left her job as a flight attendant for British Airways in search of new adventures. She embarked on a working holiday to Japan, where she secured a job as a hostess at Club Casablanca in Tokyo’s bustling Roppongi district. Lucie struggled with the transition, writing in her diary: “I’m not coping well here. I can’t pull myself out of this hole I’ve fallen into… I just want to disappear.”

A month later, Lucie left for a private dohan date with a customer and never returned. Police palmed it off as western wanderlust, but Lucie’s loved ones weren’t convinced. When two witnesses come forward to report some disturbing behaviour, the investigation suddenly takes a grisly turn.



Casefile Presents



Research & writing – Catherine Seccombe/Arcdive

Editing – Elsha McGill

Narration – Anonymous Host



‘Flatline intro’ and ‘Come play with me’ intro and outro –

Audio production – Mike Migas 

Scoring – Mike Migas and Andrew Joslyn



Logo and website design – Paulina Szymanska



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People Who Eat Darkness: The Fate of Lucie Blackman – Richard Lloyd Parry



Lucie Blackman timeline – Metro

Lucie Blackman murder case: Timeline – The Telegraph

Tokyo Vice extract: Behind the Lucie Blackman story – The Telegraph

101 things to do in Roppongi – TimeOut

Tokyo Roppongi|Roppongi Station Area Map & Sightseeing Information – Live Japan

Roppongi: from ashes to ‘High Touch Town’ – The Japan News

Lucie Blackman, the dark world of Tokyo nightclub hostessing, and the man who made her an offer she couldn’t refuse – Daily Mail

A rapist’s lair and a head entombed in concrete… concluding our gripping series on Lucie Blackman – Daily Mail

Sevenoaks girl who hoped to spin blonde to gold – The Guardian

Why I took ‘100 million pieces of silver’ for my daughter’s death – The Guardian

A Father’s Betrayal – Daily Mail

Blackman sister attacks mother, calls her venomous – The Japan Times

Tim Blackman: For the first time since Lucie was killed I feel emotionally stable again – Daily Mail

A look back at the murder of a British bar hostess in Tokyo – Crimefeed

Exclusive: A mother’s worst nightmare – Daily Mail

He is ‘immoral and appalling’: Lucie Blackman’s mother slams her ex-husband – Daily Mail

The tragic tale of a Tokyo hostess – ABS News

Glitter Girls: Young Canadian women are lured by gifts and glitz to play hostess in Japan’s night world – Pacific Rim

Following in Lucie’s footsteps – Wales Online

Ex-Met officer joins hunt for Lucie – The Telegraph

Grim secret of man in Armani who chatted up Lucie Blackman – The Guardian

A tale of rape, murder and a Japanese playboy – The Age

The ‘beast with a human face’ – BBC News

Police report Obara-Blackman link – The Japan Times

Family blame police as daughter’s killer jailed for 15 years – The Age

Joji Obara – Murderopedia

Lucie Blackman, Joji Obara and me – The Times

Remains May Belong to Bar Girl – The Washington Post

Trial by jury returns to Japan – The Guardian

People Who Eat Darkness: The Fate of Lucie Blackman by Richard Lloyd Parry – The Times

Lay judges in Japan – Wikipedia

‘Glorious’ Lucie laid to rest – BBC News

Lucie’s family put aside the pain to say farewell – The Telegraph

A verdict that caused widespread consternation – The Guardian

Rapist cleared of killing Lucie Blackman – The Telegraph

Japanese businessman acquitted over Lucie Blackman murder – The Guardian

Joji Obara convicted of abducting and mutilating Lucie Blackman – The Telegraph

Lucie’s mother weeps as serial killer is found guilty of kidnap – Evening Standard

Lucie’s mother heartbroken by verdict – Birmingham Post

Lucie Blackman’s grieving dad marks her 40th birthday with vow to keep man who dismembered her in jail – Mirror

‘Evil conman’ took £15,000 off Lucie Blackman’s family – The Telegraph


Lucie’s Retreat

Lucie Blackman Trust

The Truth of Lucie’s Case

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