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Japanese Police Arrest Man in Radioactive Drone Landing at PM's Office

Yasuo Yamamoto turned himself into police late Friday and said he was the man who landed the aircraft on top of the Prime Minister's office.
/ Source: NBC News

Police in Japan have arrested the man who claimed to have flown and landed a drone with minute traces of radiation on top of the Prime Minister’s Office.

According to public broadcaster NHK, 40-year-old Yasuo Yamamoto turned himself into the Fukui Police in western Japan late Friday evening declaring himself as the culprit.

The Tokyo Metropolitan Police, which is interrogating the suspect, confirmed to NBC News that Yamamoto was arrested for allegedly landing the drone on the Prime Minister’s Office, but declined to provide further information.

After the drone landing, a blog believed to be Yamamoto’s was discovered that detailed his every move from driving to Fukushima last year to dig up contaminated sand as well how prepared and operated the drone.

In one of the blog entries he says: “In order to prevent the restarting of nuclear reactors, one can’t rule out terrorism”

A photograph of a container described as containing 100g of contaminated soil was posted on the website, along with a picture of the drone which was painted black and a message attached to the drone. The message read, “Against restarting nuclear reactors,” and was signed “Kantei Santa,” or “Prime Minister’s Office’s Santa.”

With the exception of areas near an airport or underneath a flight path, there are no permits required to fly a drone in Japan.

But following this incident, the government held an emergency meeting on Friday to discuss how to quickly draw up new guidelines for restrictions.


— Arata Yamamoto