Suspect in Kishida Attack Accused of Attempted Murder

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Ryuji Kimura

WAKAYAMA (Jiji Press) — Police in Wakayama Prefecture on Thursday referred the suspect in the explosive attack against Prime Minister Fumio Kishida in April this year to public prosecutors on suspicion of attempted murder and other offenses.

The prefectural police apparently believe that the suspect, Ryuji Kimura, 24, intended to harm the prime minister and others, as an analysis of the explosive he used showed that it was highly lethal.

After the incident, a hole with fragments was found in a container several tens of meters from the scene.

On April 15, Kimura threw a pipe bomb toward Kishida, who was campaigning at Saikazaki Port in the city of Wakayama, from a distance of about 10 meters. It later exploded and while Kishida was evacuated safely, a police officer and a man in the audience were slightly injured.

Kimura was arrested at the scene on suspicion of forcible obstruction of business and was later served with a fresh arrest warrant on suspicion of violating the gunpowder control law.

A psychiatric evaluation began in late May to determine whether Kimura can take criminal responsibility. It was to end on Friday, and based on the results, the Wakayama District Public Prosecutors Office is expected to decide what action to take against the suspect.

According to police and other sources, Kimura is believed to have made two explosives at his home in Kawanishi, Hyogo Prefecture, between last November and April 15.