HONG KONG — Japan on Thursday executed all six former members of the Aum Shinrikyo doomsday cult who remained on demise row after the execution of the group’s founder and 6 different members earlier this month, Japan’s Justice Ministry mentioned.
The six — Satoru Hashimoto, Toru Toyoda, Kenichi Hirose, Yasuo Hayashi, Masato Yokoyama and Kazuaki Okazaki — have been convicted of involvement in a number of of three crimes: the 1995 sarin nerve gasoline assault on the Tokyo subway system, one other sarin assault in Nagano Prefecture, in 1994, and the murders of a lawyer, his spouse and their child son in 1989.
“After 20 years of investigation, the execution is ample — though some individuals say we must always hear extra from them” when it comes to contrition, mentioned Masaharu Yamada, a former police officer who investigated the assaults by the group. “Taking into consideration the agony and sorrow of victims and their households, it could be too late.”
The executions got here practically three weeks after officers carried out death sentences against Shoko Asahara, the group’s mastermind, and six of his former followers.
The three attacks, which the courts said were committed to further Mr. Asahara’s bid to “control Japan in the name of salvation,” caused the deaths of 29 people. The most notorious case, the sarin nerve gas attack on the Tokyo subway system, killed 13 people and injured thousands, making it the largest attack in Japan since World War II.
Japan remains one of the few developed countries to maintain the use of capital punishment for murders by hanging. Inmates and family members are only notified of the execution on the day it is carried out. Despite international condemnation, public support for the death penalty remains high in Japan.
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Hisako Ueno and Makiko Inoue contributed reporting from Tokyo.