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Instagram post leads to arrest of man in cactus theft

TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police arrested a 45-year-old man over the alleged theft of plants in Nakano Ward last month after the suspect made a post on a social-networking service that gave him away, reports the Mainichi Shimbun (July 24).

At around 7:20 p.m. on June 24, Izuru Kobayashi allegedly shoplifted four saboten, or cactus, plants from a home center in Nakano Ward. After a male security guard, 73, accosted him, he beat him in the face, according to police.

The assault caused the guard to temporarily lose consciousness and left him with serious injuries that required one month to heal, police said.

Izuru Kobayashi
Izuru Kobayashi (Twitter)

“After shoplifting, I beat him in order to break free,” the suspect was quoted by the Nakano Police Station in admitting to the allegations.

Kobayashi emerged as a person of interest after an examination of security camera footage. However, police were initially unable to locate his whereabouts.

Kobayashi’s hobby is raising decorative plants. After finding the suspect’s name connected to an Instagram account, officers noticed a posted image of a plant that in the background showed a residence in Itabashi Ward where a female acquaintance resides.