Asia-Pacific

Japanese anti-groping stamp sells out in half an hour

Shachihata's new anti-groping stamp enables users to tag their alleged attackers. Source: Supplied/Shachihata

A new tool designed to help squash instances of sexual assault has sold out in Japan.

A new anti-groping device has flown off the shelves as women in Japan look to fight back against sexual harassment.

The special stamp allows victims to brand their assailants with an invisible ink stamp in the shape of a hand.

A black-light can then be used to identify those who have been marked with the stamp.

Female passengers come out from "Women Only" carriage at a metro station in Tokyo, Japan.
Female passengers come out from "Women Only" carriage at a metro station in Tokyo, Japan.
Getty Images AsiaPac

The manufacturer Shachihata says it developed the device to help curb cases of groping across the country’s rail network.

Development of the stamp ramped up in May after a video showing a pair of Japanese schoolgirls chasing after a suspected groper went viral on social media.

"The most ideal would be a world free of sexual crimes and violence, including molesting," Shachihata said is a statement.

"However, this is too big a challenge, and it is a difficult social problem to encourage recognition and change of everyone by the action of one person alone."

Tokyo police records indicate more than 2,600 sex crimes were reported in 2017, including more than 1,700 cases of groping.

A special run of 500 anti-groping stamp units was made available this week but sold out within 30 minutes.

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