The cult accused in the deadly gas attack on the Tokyo subway tried to gather material to make nuclear bombs, a news agency reported Saturday.
Police suspect a top cult official, Kiyohide Hayakawa, visited Australia in 1993 to investigate ways of purifying uranium for possible use in the weapons, Kyodo News Service said, quoting unnamed police sources.
Police would not confirm or deny the report.
Hayakawa has been charged with plotting murder in connection with the release of the nerve gas sarin in Tokyo subways in March. About a dozen other leaders of the Aum Shinri Kyo cult face charges in the attack, which killed 12 people and sickened 5,500.