News Kuroko's Basketball Threat Suspect Caught on Camera Last Year
posted on 2013-11-11 12:00 EST
Investigators in the Kuroko's Basketball threat letters case announced on November 5 that a security camera caught a possible suspect on tape last year. The footage comes from a security camera at Sophia University on October 12, the day a possibly lethal dose of hydrogen sulfide was left on campus in the university's gymnasium. The suspect's face was hidden but police described him as a thin male dressed in all black and carrying a container. Several students also witnessed someone of the same description. Police identified a similar figure near another location involved in the case.
The first investigation division of the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department is searching for the man.
A few days before the October 12, 2012 incident, a police officer at the Yotsuya Japan Railway station near Sophia University questioned a man with a similar description dressed in all black. Later, someone claiming to be the criminal posted a message online that said, "When I put the container in a coin-operated locker at Yotsuya Station, I was questioned by police." Tokyo Metropolitan Police therefore strongly suspects that the man questioned at that time is the suspect.
BackgroundSince October 2012, locations linked to Kuroko's Basketball creator Tadatoshi Fujimaki have received threat letters, including some with powdered and liquid substances. A source in the investigation of the threats said there is a high possibility that the liquid sent to Sophia University (Fujimaki's alma mater) on October 12, 2012 could emit a lethal dose of hydrogen sulfide if vaporized. The University initiated heightened security procedures after another round of threat letters were sent last month.
Several Kuroko's Basketball dōjinshi events throughout Japan were cancelled in the aftermath of the threats. The "Shadow Trickster 3" event did proceed without incident at the Big Sight last October, shortly after the center received its first threat. The official "Kuroko no Basuke produced by Namco Namja Town" event in Tokyo ended 19 days early as a result of the threats, and Animate Café Tennoji in Osaka cancelled a planned Kuroko's Basketball collaboration event. Comic Market (Comiket), the world's largest dōjinshi event, barred Kuroko's Basketball items and circles last December.
In February, the organizers of the Comic City dōjinshi events barred circles from selling Kuroko's Basketball items at March 17's Haru Comic City 18 event, after they received a request to do so from the management of the Tokyo Big Sight event complex. The same organizers had barred Kuroko's Basketball from the Comic City Osaka 92 event on January 6, and then cancelled February 10's Double Clutch event outright. However, they held the Comic City Tokyo 131 event at Tokyo Big Sight and insisted on allowing Kuroko's Basketball circles. Comic City Tokyo 131 proceeded without incident on January 27.
The convenience store chains 7-Eleven and Family Mart as well as other companies such as Sankei Shimbun received new threat letters in October 2013 said that the sender has put poison and agricultural chemicals in various Kuroko's Basketball confectionery snacks. As a result, 7-Eleven temporarily removed the "Voi-Colle Kuroko's Basketball Wafers 2" cookies, and Family Mart stopped selling the "Ichiban Kuji Kuroko no Basuke ~Seirin & Kaijō~" lottery merchandise line. The Circle K Sunkus store chain is also considering suspending sales of the merchandise.
Major rental chain Tsutaya also confirmed last month that it is removing all Kuroko's Basketball DVD and manga rentals from its stores. Japanese bookstore chain Yurindo and Reliable, a Japanese book and stationary store chain in Hokkaido, are also removing Kuroko's Basketball merchandise from its shelves. Several other bookstore chains such as Kinokuniya, Sanseido, Junkudo, Miyawaki, and other bookstores, plan to continue carrying the manga despite receiving threat letters.
Television station TBS noted that about 250 threat letters were mailed to various stores and news organizations in October 2013 alone, with at least one letter containing lighter fluid. The sender has been going by the name of "the Mysterious Person with 801 Faces." According to the Tokyo Metropolitan Police, the majority of the letters mailed last month were mailed from Saitama Prefecture on October 12.