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Pair pair posed as fire alarm inspectors in robbery of elderly man

TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested two men who are suspected of posing as fire alarm inspectors in the attempted robbery of an elderly man in Machida City earlier this year, reports Jiji Press (Oct. 14).

According to police, the suspects are Tatsuya Ganeko, a 23-year-old painter living in Soka City, Saitama Prefecture, and Kazuki Matsumoto, a 21-year-old student at Sendai University in Miyagi Prefecture.

At around 2:00 p.m. on September 5, the pair tied up the 86-year-old man after gaining access to his residence in the Minamitsukushino area. “Show us the location of the safe,” one of them threatened.

During the incident, the suspects allegedly beat the man, causing injuries that required about one month to heal, police said.

When the victim’s daughter arrived at the residence, the suspects fled empty-handed.

Upon his arrest on suspicion of robbery resulting in injury on Wednesday, Ganeko admitted to the allegations. However, Matsumoto denied “carrying out an assault.”

Tatsuya Ganeko, left, and Kazuki Matsumoto (Twitter)

“I haven’t earned a single yen”

According to police, the suspects are believed to have carried out the caper after responding to a message posted on Twitter about “underground part-time work” paying 1 million yen.

During questioning, one of the suspects said that he had participated in several other unsuccessful robberies. “I haven’t earned a single yen,” he said.

Police had already arrested the suspects over a similar case that took place in Adachi Ward, according to Fuji News Network (Oct. 14).

Police are aware of at least 10 similar cases that took place in Tokyo and Chiba and Kanagawa prefectures in September in which the perpetrators posed as inspectors or conductors of surveys.

Police are seeking the whereabouts of a man calling himself “Akasaka” who is believed to be the ringleader for the crimes.