MATSUMOTO, NAGANO PREF. – It is difficult to fathom that a religious group might be behind a poison gas attack on hundreds of civilians. More likely, logic suggests, it would either be the result of a terrible accident or the work of a deranged individual. When confronted with such a scenario in Matsumoto in 1994, the Nagano Police Department went with the lone-wolf theory.
Their chief suspect was Yoshiyuki Kono, a machinery salesman who lived in a sprawling wooden house next to the site where members of Aum Shinrikyo decided to park the customized vehicle carrying the deadly nerve agent.