Arama They Didn't

11:38 am - 06/04/2012

'Doomsday Cult Member' Held

Undated photo of, Naoko Kikuchi, a former senior member of Aum Shinrikyo doomsday cult wanted in the 1995 Tokyo subway sarin attack.

A woman who may be a Japanese cult member wanted over the deadly 1995 gas attacks on the Tokyo subway has been arrested, Japanese media say.

They say Naoko Kikuchi, a 40-year-old ex-member of the Aum Shinrikyo doomsday cult, was picked up in Sagamihara, west of Tokyo, on Sunday.

Police said they could not confirm the reports.

Ms Kikuchi is one of two Aum Shinrikyo members still at large. Twelve people died in the 1995 Tokyo attacks.

Hundreds of others were injured when the cult released sarin nerve gas on several trains during rush hour.

On New Year's Eve another former member of Aum Shinrikyo, Makoto Hirata, turned himself in to police after nearly 17 years on the run.

Former cult leader Shoko Asahara, accused of masterminding the 1995 sarin gas attack on Tokyo's subway
Cult leader Shoko Asahara

Nearly 200 Aum Shinrikyo members have been convicted in connection with the sarin attack and other crimes. Thirteen are awaiting execution.

Aum Shinrikyo began as a spiritual group mixing Hindu and Buddhist beliefs in the 1980s, but developed into a paranoid cult obsessed with Armageddon.

Cult leader Shoko Asahara is among those on death row.

Aum Shinrikyo reinvented itself as the Aleph group, which continues to operate as a spiritual group.

Totally ignorant of me not to know this was still going on.

Source: BBC
More about the other member who turned himself in here
koichiko 4th-Jun-2012 05:27 pm (UTC)
Don't worry, if you are ignorant so am I.
Had no idea that so many people were convicted, I'm not used to so many people being on trial for one crime. Would they usually just blame everything on the leader?
mikilove13 4th-Jun-2012 05:32 pm (UTC)
I suppose they could, but if there is evidence others were involved, it wouldn't be easy for either side to say it's the leaders fault. Unless they strike some sort of deal, and I'm not to sure how common that is in Japan, they'll most likely get sentences reflecting their part in it like with the Manson Family in America.
kokoro_umisea 5th-Jun-2012 11:57 am (UTC)
I'm not an expert but I know they had a strict system in which everyone involved at different levels. Some claimed they only did what they're told, and didn't know there'd be an attack to innocent people. But certain people at management level had clearly planned it so they couldn't blame it all on the leader. People who involved in the process of planning, producing and spreading the sarin gas were convicted with harder punishments of course.
If you're interested, I suggest Haruki Murakami's Underground. It's a good read IMO.
chibisilent16 10th-Jun-2012 08:30 pm (UTC)
Thanks for recommending another Murakami book for me to read. :)
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