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4 handguns belonging to Japan police briefly misplaced

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Police officers patrol an area near the U.S. Embassy in Minato Ward, Tokyo, on Sept. 26, ahead of the state funeral for former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe the following day.

Four handguns belonging to regional police officers dispatched to guard dignitaries attending the state funeral for former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Tokyo were briefly misplaced, the Metropolitan Police Department has announced.

The firearms were recovered after about four hours. They contained live ammunition, but there was no sign they had been used, according to the MPD.

The four guns were stored in a locker placed at the police academy in Fuchu, Tokyo. Shortly after 4 p.m. Friday, a locker-leasing company retrieved the locker and transported it to Soka, Saitama Prefecture, not realizing the guns were inside.

The incident occurred because a member of the MPD’s security division had not transferred the guns to a storage case. Their absence from the storage case was noticed by a regional police officer helping to guard foreign dignitaries who were still in Tokyo after the funeral.

The guns were recovered at about 8 p.m. Friday, according to the MPD.