Nicola Furlong murder accused's trial will be in adult court
A Japanese court has ruled that a 19-year-old man accused of murdering Irish woman Nicola Furlong murder will be tried as an adult.
The decision by the three judges means the maximum penalty the defendant could face is life imprisonment.
If he had been tried as a juvenile, the maximum prison term is five years.
Ms Furlong, 21, who was studying in Japan, as part of her studies with Dublin City University, was strangled in a Tokyo hotel in May.
The decision to send the defendant, who is a musician from the United States, for trial in the criminal courts, means reporting restrictions on the case will now be relaxed.
The judges made their decision after considering victim impact statements from Ms Furlong's family and police reports into the case.
Nicola Furlong, from Curracloe, County Wexford, was killed after she and a friend went to see a concert by the rapper Nicki Minaj in Tokyo on 23 May.
She was at the concert with a friend where they met two men and the four ended up in a hotel together.
It is believed she had been sexually assaulted and strangled.
Two Americans were arrested and questioned about her death.
Ms Furlong had been in Japan as an exchange student and had been studying at the Takasaki City University of Economics in Takasaki, Gunma Prefecture, about 60 miles north-west of Tokyo.