The following is a chronology of events related to the Aum Shinrikyo doomsday cult and its founder, Shoko Asahara, whose real name was Chizuo Matsumoto:
March 2, 1955 — Matsumoto is born in Kumamoto Prefecture.
February 1984 — Asahara forms group Aum Shinsen no Kai.
July 1987 — Aum Shinsen no Kai is renamed Aum Shinrikyo.
November 4, 1989 — Tsutsumi Sakamoto, a lawyer helping people with complaints against Aum, is slain along with his wife and 1-year-old son at their Yokohama home.
February 1990 — Asahara and 24 other members of Aum run in a House of Representatives election. All of them lose.
June 27, 1994 — Aum members release sarin in a residential district of Matsumoto, Nagano Prefecture, killing eight people and injuring about another 600.
March 20, 1995 — Aum members release sarin on Tokyo subway trains, killing 13 people and injuring more than 6,000.
May 16, 1995 — Asahara is arrested.
April 24, 1996 — The trial of Asahara begins.
February 2000 — Aum renames itself Aleph.
March 13, 2003 — While being questioned for the first time in court, Asahara refuses to speak.
April 24, 2003 — Prosecutors demand Asahara be given the death penalty.
February 27, 2004 — Tokyo District Court sentences Asahara to death.
September 15, 2006 — Supreme Court finalizes Asahara’s death sentence.
May 2007 — Former Aum spokesman Fumihiro Joyu launches splinter group Hikari no Wa.
June 2008 — Law enacted to provide Aum victims and relatives with government benefits.
December 31, 2011 — Aum fugitive Makoto Hirata surrenders to police.
June 2012 — Aum fugitives Katsuya Takahashi and Naoko Kikuchi are arrested.
January 18, 2018 — Supreme Court rejects Takahashi’s appeal, settling his life sentence and ending all trials related to the cult.
March 14-15, 2018 — Seven of 13 former Aum members on death row are transferred from a Tokyo detention center to other facilities.
July 6, 2018 — Asahara and six other Aum members on death row are executed.
July 26, 2018 — Six remaining former Aum members on death row are executed.
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