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Japanese 'vagina artist' charged

December 25, 2014 7:00 pm

A Japanese woman who makes art based on her vagina has been charged with obscenity, in a case that has sparked discussion on censorship.

Megumi Igarashi, 42, had allegedly displayed an “obscene” work at a Tokyo sex shop and sent 3D data of her genitals to other people.

She was arrested in early December and has been held in detention since then.

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Ms Igarashi was previously arrested in July, but was later released following a legal appeal and public pressure.

On Wednesday Ms Igarashi was charged with obscenity for displaying a work modelled on her vagina and for distributing data that could be used to print out a 3D copy of her genitals, reported the Asahi Shimbun newspaper.

Ms Igarashi, who goes by the name Rokudenashi-ko which means “no-good girl” in Japanese, pleaded not guilty.

Asahi Shimbun reported that she read out in court a prepared statement which said: “My works are all meant to induce friendly laughter because they involve cutely decorating sexual organs. The works are not obscene.”

Japan’s obscenity laws ban the depiction of genitalia, which are blurred in broadcast media and images.

If convicted, Ms Igarashi could be jailed up to two years and/or fined as much as 2.5 million yen (£13,350, $20,750).

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