Al-Qaeda probe leads to indictments

Tokyo prosecutors indicted one Malian and two Bangladeshi men Tuesday on charges of violating immigration laws in connection with investigations into suspected al-Qaeda activities in Japan.

The three were arrested earlier along with several others as police looked for people who had contacts with Lionel Dumont, an alleged senior al-Qaeda member found to have lived in Japan before being arrested in Germany in December 2003.

The three did not make any statements to investigators that suggested that they were linked to the terrorist group, the Tokyo District Public Prosecutor’s Office said.

According to the indictment, Ahmed Faishal, 26, a Bangladeshi, smuggled himself into Japan aboard a ship from South Korea in January 1997.

He had been living in Kawaguchi, Saitama Prefecture, it said.

Mohamed Muktar Hossain, 29, another Bangladeshi, entered Japan with a forged passport from Bangladesh in February 2000, the indictment said.

He had also been living in Kawaguchi.

Kane Yaya, 41, a Malian, has overstayed his visa in Japan, according to the charge. He had been living in Tokyo’s Shinjuku Ward.

Anthem test failed

Police said Tuesday they have unmasked four Colombian nationals carrying fake passports identifying them as Mexicans by asking them to sing the Mexican national anthem, which they did not know.

The forged passports came to light when Nogales Zuniga Jhon Wilfore, 29, and three others were unable to sing the anthem following their arrest by the Metropolitan Police Department over a break-in and attempted robbery earlier this month.

The police said the four, who were unemployed and residing in Tokyo, told investigators that they posed as Mexican nationals because the background check carried out by Japanese immigration authorities on Colombian nationals was stricter than that for Mexicans.

The four — three men and one woman — arrived in Japan in March.