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Tokyo cops nab man suspected in serial arson cases

Koji Kimura
Koji Kimura

TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested a 41-year-old man suspected in a series of arson cases in Kita and Adachi wards last month, reports NHK (Mar. 7).

On Wednesday morning, Koji Kimura, was prosecuted for allegedly setting a motorcycle on fire at an apartment building in the Toshima Area of Kita Ward on February 19.

Prior to his arrest, Kimura was found to be in possession of a cigarette lighter while being questioned, according to TV Asahi (Mar. 8).

Kimura, who has been charged with causing property damage, admits to the allegations. “I don’t remember exactly because I was drunk, but I did it more than 10 times in that area in February,” the suspect was quoted by police, according to the Sankei Shimbun (Mar. 7).

Police are investigating whether Kimura was behind a total of 18 suspicious fires, targeting motorcycles, mattresses, bicycles and structures, in Adachi and Kita wards that occurred over a two-week period in February.

On the evening of February 19, firefighters responded to a report about a blaze at a two-floor workshop and residence in the Toshima area. The fire consumed 230 square meters of space in the structure. Prior to the blaze, police received two reports of motorcycles set ablaze in the same area.

Kimura became a person of interest after examination of security camera footage showed him riding around on a bicycle in the areas where the firest took place.