Man arrested after holding ‘yakiniku’ restaurant manager hostage

Police on Sunday arrested a 28-year-old man who was holding the manager of a “yakiniku” grilled meat restaurant in Tokyo hostage and claimed he planted a bomb at the establishment, later telling police that wanted to eat grilled meat before he was caught, investigative sources said.

No one was injured and only a fake bomb was found in the restaurant in the Shibuya district, the sources said.

The suspect, Akito Araki, allegedly told the manager he wanted to copy recent attacks on trains, suggesting he may have been inspired by the October 31 attack on a Keio line train in Tokyo at the during which a man stabbed a passenger and started a fire, the sources said.

“I could have done (the attack) anywhere, but I wanted to eat grilled meat before I got caught,” he told the sources.

When calling emergency services, the manager, 49, reported that he had received a note from Araki asking him to call the police as he had activated a bomb, they said.

Araki told investigators during questioning that he “finds no reason to live” after leaving his parents’ home in Nagasaki prefecture, southwestern Japan, two weeks ago and being became homeless in the Shinjuku district of Tokyo.

Three boxed items wrapped in duct tape along with cell phones were found at the scene. The suspect told investigators he made the fake bombs.

Araki is also under investigation for violating the gun control law after the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department confiscated a butcher knife and a fruit knife from him.

The incident happened around 8:55 p.m. Saturday at the facility in the basement of a building near JR Yoyogi Station, with investigators trying to coax the suspect in the hours that followed.

Loud noises were heard as they burst into the building shortly after midnight, with Araki then being taken away in a police vehicle.

About Vivian J. Smith

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