Matsumoto: Aum's sarin guinea pig

Jun 21, 2014

Matsumoto: Aum's sarin guinea pig

by Paul Murphy

It’s been 20 years since mass murderers came to Toshie Koibuchi’s tiny street. It was the night of June 27, 1994. She was then 50, a housewife living with her husband and mother in a slightly upmarket residential area of Matsumoto, Nagano Prefecture. Koibuchi ...

Former Aum member denies being bomber

May 30, 2014

Former Aum member denies being bomber

by Tomohiro Osaki

Former Aum Shinrikyo fugitive Naoko Kikuchi said Friday she had no idea that cult superiors had roped her into a plot to build and send a parcel bomb to the Tokyo Metropolitan Government headquarters in 1995. Kikuchi, 42, is pleading not guilty to charges ...

How a yoga school became a doomsday cult

Jan 18, 2014

How a yoga school became a doomsday cult

by Jun Hongo

Aum Shinrikyo’s criminal activities began in the late 1980s and culminated in the 1995 nerve-gas attacks on Tokyo’s subway system. The group was founded in 1984 by Shoko Asahara, the babbling, half-blind guru whose real name is Chizuo Matsumoto. Initially starting life as a ...

Cultist downplays guilt as trial opens

Jan 16, 2014

Cultist downplays guilt as trial opens

by Tomohiro Osaki

Makoto Hirata, one of the last Aum Shinrikyo cultists yet to be tried, on Thursday played down his involvement in the 1995 kidnapping of a Tokyo notary, telling the Tokyo District Court in his first trial session that he only drove the getaway car ...

Dec 4, 2013

Niimi's wife held in bid to pressure man to join Aleph

The wife of a condemned Aum Shinrikyo figure was arrested Wednesday for allegedly trying to forcibly recruit an acquaintance into Aleph, the cult’s successor sect, Osaka police said. Yuki Niimi, 36, the wife of death-row inmate Tomomitsu Niimi, 49, is suspected of using her ...

Nov 27, 2013

Order for Tokyo to pay damages to Aleph upheld

The Tokyo High Court upheld on Wednesday a lower court ruling ordering the metropolitan government to pay damages to religious group Aleph, previously known as Aum Shinrikyo, for releasing an investigative report that attributed the 1995 attempted murder of the national police chief to ...

Firm's tech takes out chemical arms

| Nov 24, 2013

Firm's tech takes out chemical arms

A Japanese firm claims it has technology that can help Syria dispose of its chemical weapons in line with a Sept. 27 United Nations Security Council resolution ordering the nation to do so. “Davinci (short for detonation of ammunition in a vacuum integrated chamber), ...