In what could be a major step toward solving the March poison gas terror attack in the subways, police Tuesday for the first time named a specific leader of the Aum Supreme Truth cult as a possible suspect.
Police also have identified the subway stations where at least five people suspected in the attack got off trains shortly before deadly sarin nerve gas began leaking from parcels, quasi-governmental NHK Television reported.
The poison killed 12 and afflicted more than 5,500.
Investigators are trying to determine whether Yoshihiro Inoue, 25, head of the cult’s self-styled “intelligence ministry,” had a role in the subway attack, NHK said.
Inoue, who has disappeared along with various other sect leaders sought by the police, already was wanted in connection with the kidnapping of a cult critic.
Police so far have arrested more than 150 sect followers, most on minor charges for actions that would normally be ignored. None of those arrested has been accused of involvement in the subway attack.