Subway gunman may have been after ticket proceeds

The man who shot a Shibuya subway station worker Wednesday during a morning rush hour robbery attempt may have thought the victim was carrying proceeds from ticket sales, according to investigative sources.

Metropolitan Police Department sources quoted a witness as saying he saw the gunman, who remains at large, trailing Shigeo Nishioka, 32, down a stairway to an underground level of Tokyo Metro Shibuya Station just before he was shot.

Nishioka, of Konosu, Saitama Prefecture, sustained a serious gunshot wound to the right side of his abdomen at close range. The gunman, who fled the scene, has been described as being in his 50s and about 160 cm tall.

MPD investigators have learned that the route Nishioka took is normally taken by station officials and security guards when they deliver the day’s ticket proceeds to an underground office.

The station officials take the route several times a day to deliver the cash, each time carrying around 30 million yen.

Investigators suspect the assailant may have had access to such information, they added.

When Nishioka was assaulted, he was in uniform and carrying a paper bag containing his personal belongings, including toiletries and clothes.