NPA gets warrant for N. Korean spy
Tuesday, April 25, 2006
Police obtained arrest warrants Monday for North Korean spy Sin Guang Su and a former principal of a North Korean school in Japan for allegedly kidnapping Tadaaki Hara in 1980, police sources said.
Police placed Sin, 78, on an Interpol wanted list in 2002 for allegedly obtaining and using a Japanese passport for himself under Hara's name. He is also on the list for allegedly kidnapping two other Japanese in 1978.
Police suspect Sin orchestrated Hara's abduction in collaboration with others, including the former school principal, Kim Gil Uk, 78, who is now living in South Korea, the sources said.
The National Police Agency is also expected to put the two on the Interpol wanted list on the latest charge.
Police will continue demanding that Pyongyang extradite Sin, who is believed to be in North Korea. They are not planning to seek Kim's extradition until Sin is arrested, since the latter is considered the ringleader, the sources said.
According to a police investigation, Sin and others collaborated to kidnap Hara, an employee at a Chinese restaurant in Osaka, from the coast in Miyazaki Prefecture using a spy boat in June 1980.
Sin is suspected of passing himself off as Hara after obtaining a passport under Hara's name and entering Japan repeatedly to conduct espionage.
1985, Sin was arrested by South Korean authorities on espionage charges while hiding in the South. He was later sentenced to death but was pardoned in 1999 and deported to the North.
Kim was arrested along with Sin, found guilty, served time and now lives on the South Korean island of Cheju.
Hara's kidnapping surfaced during testimony given by Sin to the South Korean authorities.
North Korea has said Hara married another kidnapped Japanese in 1984 and died two years later of cirrhosis of the liver. But no documents to back up this claim have been produced, according to Japan.
The arrest warrants are being sought by the Metropolitan Police Department's public security bureau. The charge is abduction with the intent of transferring the abductee abroad.
The bureau is also questioning people believed to have collaborated with Sin, the sources said. It believes he coerced about 20 people into helping him.