Antenna tower sabotage follows cult-related threat

Mainichi/May 14, 2003

Takamatsu -- Several bolts were found removed from a 30-meter-tall antenna tower here Wednesday after the local bureau of a national daily received a letter threatening to knock down the structure unless it stopped covering the bizarre "white cult," police said.

The incident followed the collapse of Shikoku Electric Power Co.'s 73-meter-tall tower supporting high-voltage electric power cables in Sakaide, Kagawa Prefecture, in February 1998 after bolts had been removed from it.

Kagawa Prefectural Police said they are investigating a possible link between the two cases, noting the sites are close to each other and that bolts had been removed from towers in both cases. The statute of limitations has already run out for the Sakaide case.

At around 11:35 a.m., prefectural police received a report from the Asahi Shimbun Takamatsu bureau that it had received a letter threatening to knock down an antenna tower on Mount Goshikidai in Takamatsu unless it abandons its coverage of the Panawave Laboratory cult.

Prefectural police dispatched several officers to the scene who found that several bolts had been removed from the lower part of the tower supporting the antenna for the prefectural government's radio communication system used in case of a major disaster.

The removed bolts had not been left at the scene. Three nearby TV antennas were not damaged.

The threatening letter was postmarked in Takamatsu, according to the prefectural police.

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