Driver in Tokyo street attack says he planned to start fire at crowded shrine
Japan Today -- Jan 05
The arrested driver of a car that plowed into a New Year crowd in Tokyo's Harajuku district has said he was planning to spray kerosene at people at a popular Shinto shrine and set them ablaze, investigative sources said Friday.

In the rented minicar used in the attack, police found a 20-liter tank of kerosene and a high-pressure water sprayer with an ignition tool attached that the 21-year-old suspect Kazuhiro Kusakabe says he bought to carry out the plan.

"I was going to use the sprayer and kerosene to set fire to crowds at Meiji Shrine," Kusakabe, identified by the police as a resident of Osaka Prefecture, was quoted as saying, adding he drove into the pedestrians after "things didn't go well."

He also said he wanted to "target areas where there were many people" and had considered Osaka as well as Tokyo, according to the sources.

Kusakabe was arrested on New Year's Day on suspicion of attempted murder, after ramming his car into pedestrians on a busy shopping street in Harajuku, a center of Japanese youth culture and fashion.

Eight people were injured, including a 19-year-old university student living in Tokyo who remains unconscious due to a serious head injury.

News source: Japan Today
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