His trail cold for years, the last fugitive suspected in a doomsday cult’s deadly nerve gas attack on Tokyo’s subways in 1995 was caught at a comic book cafe Friday, closing a chapter on Japan’s worst terrorist attack.
He had altered his appearance and reportedly used a fake name and avoided meeting people to evade arrest, but Katsuya Takahashi admitted who he was when approached by police at the cafe in downtown Tokyo.
The former bodyguard for the Aum Shinrikyo cult leader, Takahashi had been on Japan’s most wanted list for years for his suspected participation in the sarin gas attack that killed 13 people and injured about 6,000, shattering Japan’s long-held sense of safety.
Read the rest of the story: Japan doomsday cultist arrested 17 years after deadly subway gas attack.
Japan has mobilized thousands of police to hunt for the last fugitive suspected in a doomsday cult’s deadly nerve gas attack on Tokyo’s subway 17 years ago.
The long-cold search advanced significantly with the surrender of one fugitive earlier this year and the arrest of another Sunday, leaving only Katsuya Takahashi.
Some 5,000 officers fanned out Friday across the Tokyo area to hand out fresh photos of him and monitor transportation hubs to keep him from escaping the capital.
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One of the two remaining fugitive members of the doomsday cult behind the 1995 nerve gas attack on Tokyo subways was arrested Sunday, Japanese media reports said.
Former senior Aum Shinrikyo cult member Naoko Kikuchi, 40, had been spotted in Sagamihara city, 30 kilometers 20 miles southwest of Tokyo, and acknowledged who she was when approached by police, according to NHK TV and other media reports, citing investigative sources. She was wanted on charges of murder in the 1995 attack.
Read the rest of the story: Report: Japan Arrests Sarin Attack Cult Member.
A woman claiming to have lived with a senior member of the doomsday cult behind the 1995 nerve gas attack on Tokyo’s subways turned herself in and was arrested Tuesday for helping him evade police for nearly 17 years.
Akemi Saito, also a member of Aum Shinrikyo, gave herself up after Makoto Hirata surrendered to police on New Year’s Eve, according to police and Saito’s lawyer.
Hirata has refused to explain how he managed to keep underground for so long despite being one of Japan’s most-wanted fugitives.
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The National Police Agency said Monday it recognizes 6,583 people as having been victimized by the heinous crimes committed by Aum Shinrikyo, excluding the fatalities, although only some 92 percent of them had applied by the Friday deadline for government relief.
As of Friday, 6,084 people, including the next of kin of those killed in the commission of eight of the doomsday cult’s crimes, including the 1995 sarin gas attack on the Tokyo subway system, had filed for compensation with the central government.
Read the rest of the story: 6,583 victimized by Aum recognized.