Prosecutors Claim KyoAni Attacker Held Fully Responsible

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Kyoto District Court

KYOTO (Jiji Press) — Public prosecutors on Monday reiterated that a man accused of conducting an arson attack on a Kyoto Animation Co. studio in 2019 was competent to be held fully responsible for the incident that left 36 people dead and 32 others injured.

The prosecutors offered the view during the interim arguments in the 16th hearing of Shinji Aoba’s trial at Kyoto District Court.

After the defense side sets out its opinions later in the day, the judges and lay judges are expected to hold discussions behind closed doors and conclude to what extent Aoba, 45, facing murder and other charges, is criminally responsible.

The prosecutors said that the crime could be attributed to Aoba’s personality and that it was not possible to say that he had a limited capability to take responsibility.

“We could fully expect him to stop committing the crime,” the prosecutor side said, noting that the accused had a “guilty conscience” as he had hesitated to commit arson.

The prosecutor side also said that the delusion Aoba had at the time of the attack had a limited effect on him, only represented intensified anger and impatience and was “not imminent enough to affect his life or body.”

A doctor who conducted a psychiatric examination at the request of the prosecutors before the indictment has said that Aoba had paranoid personality disorder, but his delusion had almost no influence on the attack.

Meanwhile, a psychiatrist who conducted a similar examination at the request of the defense side after the indictment concluded that Aoba had severe paranoid disorder and that he attacked the Kyoto Animation studio due to his delusion.