• Kyodo

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A company owner has been arrested for allegedly selling some 180 bags of unauthorized insecticide that has been found to cause cancer, police said Friday.

Yasuo Hayashi, 65, allegedly sold the chemical, Plictran, through his firm in Komatsujima, Tokushima Prefecture, between July 2001 and last April, according to police. He reportedly made some 460,000 yen from the sales.

Hayashi is suspected of violating the Agricultural Chemicals Control Law and a law controlling poisonous and deleterious substances, police said.

The buyer, Ryuji Takano, 44, has been arrested and charged with violating the chemical control law.

Hayashi, the fifth person to be arrested in connection with the case, has admitted selling the chemical, police said.

Police searched a trading company in Chuo Ward, Osaka, in late August on suspicion that the firm sold the chemical to Hayashi. They said they intend to send the case to prosecutors soon.

Takano was arrested on suspicion of selling about 1,700 bags of unauthorized chemicals, including the pesticide Difolatan, to company operators in Yamagata Prefecture.

Police also suspect he sold unauthorized pesticides to 54 chemical sellers in 23 prefectures. None of the entities was identified.

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