• Kyodo


A man was arrested Friday for allegedly flying a drone in a prohibited area without permission in the first such incident since Japan began regulating the unmanned aircraft in 2015.

Koji Shiokawa, 58, was arrested on suspicion of violating the revised Civil Aeronautics Law by flying a drone around a park in Kitakyushu on Aug. 21. The park is near a residential area in the city that is designated as a no-fly zone by law due to its high population density.

While several drone flight violations have been recorded since the legal revision took affect, only some of cases have been referred to prosecutors.

Friday’s arrest, however, is the first for flying a drone in a prohibited area without permission, the National Police Agency said.

The police said Shiokawa visited a police station in the city on Jan. 26 and said he had lost his drone. Police officers then questioned him on a voluntary basis four days later on suspicion that he flew the device in a prohibited area.

Shiokawa later refused to respond to repeated police requests to appear at the station.

Fearing he might destroy evidence, he was placed under arrest. Shiokawa later admitted to the allegation, according to the police.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.