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Tuesday 2 September 2014

Student murder: Dancer disables social network sites as Nicola Furlong’s body to be flown home

Mark Hilliard

Published 29/05/2012 | 05:00

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Nicola Furlong: found dead in Japan last week
Dancer James Blackston, AKA King Tight
James Blackston

THE Twitter and myspace accounts of an American dancer charged in connection with the death of Wexford student Nicola Furlong (21) in Japan, have been disabled.

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James “King Tight” Blackston, (23), and another teen, unnamed by the Japanese police, have been charged with an indecent assault on another Irish exchange student who was studying at the Takasaki City University of Economics in Gunma Prefecture, with Nicola.



King Tight’s Twitter @kingtightbucc20 is no longer working and his profile on MySpace could not be viewed today.



Blackston has reportedly served as background dancer for Omarion and Marques Houston in Osaka. He supposedly appeared in music videos for the Black Eyed Peas, Chris Brown, and J. Lo. It is not clear if the men were connected to rapper Nicki Minaj, whose concert Nicola Furlong had attended on the night she died.



The US State Department confirmed that the two Americans were arrested and a police investigation is underway.



Nicola Furlong reportedly died from cervical compression, known as strangulation. She was found unconscious in a hotel room.



Arrangements were being made today to repatriate Nicola’s body and her family, from Curracloe, Co Wexford, have asked for privacy in their grief. Her body is expected to arrive home on Thursday.



The 21-year-old is likely to be laid to rest in her native Curracloe over the weekend, although details have yet to be confirmed.



Ms Furlong was found on the floor of a hotel room in Tokyo early last Thursday. She and her friend had attended rapper Nicki Minaj's concert last Wednesday night and met the two accused men afterwards.



CCTV footage captured them getting into a taxi before returning to the Keio Plaza Hotel in the Shinjuku district of the city.



Blackston and the other man have been charged with ' quasi forcible indecency' in relation to their treatment of Ms Furlong's friend in the taxi on the way back to the hotel, during which time she was allegedly groped by the men.



It is believed the investigation is now focusing on whether they had spiked the girls' drinks or plied them with strong alcohol.



Tokyo police released information in relation to the charge yesterday.



"These two men allegedly took advantage of a female unable to resist due to the fact she was in a comatose state from a highly alcoholic beverage," a spokesperson said.



"On a taxi ride between Shibuya and Shinjuku, they took advantage of a woman by touching her body.



"As that is an indecent act, they have been charged with quasi forcible indecency."



This is understood to be a holding charge used by police to retain the men in custody while the young student's death is thoroughly probed.



The second girl -- who has not been identified -- is still in Japan and family members have flown out to comfort her.



A source said: "She is in Tokyo and she is very shocked but her family have arrived in Japan and her mother is with her now."



Ms Furlong was studying at Takasaki City University of Economics in the Gunma prefecture as an exchange student from Dublin City University. She was due to return home in July.

Irish Independent

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