China’s military is thought to have instructed a hacker group to conduct cyberattacks on nearly 200 companies and research institutes in Japan, including the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, investigative sources said Tuesday.

Tokyo police referred a Chinese man, who is a member of the Chinese Communist Party, to prosecutors Tuesday over his alleged involvement in the cyberattacks, they said.

It is believed that the series of hacks were conducted by "Tick," a Chinese cyberespionage group, under the direction of China's People's Liberation Army, according to the sources.