Kyoto Animation comments on suspect's arrest

36 people died and 34 were injured in the Kyoto studio blaze last year

On Wednesday, TV footage showed the suspect strapped to a stretcher as he was carried into a police station.

Japanese police today arrested a suspect in the deadly arson at a Kyoto anime studio previous year after he recovered enough from his own severe burns to respond to the police investigation.

Police had issued an arrest warrant for Shinji Aoba at the time of the fire but had been unable to question him after he suffered serious burns in the blaze at Kyoto Animation.

A woman prays on August 8, 2019, at an altar set up for victims of the July 18 arson attack on the three-story studio of Kyoto Animation Co.in the western Japan city.

Eye witnesses say he used petrol from two large containers to set fire to the ground floor of the animation studio.

Some employees managed to flee the studio, but others attempting to escape to the roof of the three-storey building found their exit delayed by a door that survivors said had been hard to open.

Many others tried but failed to escape to the roof, fire officials said and many died of carbon monoxide poisoning.


The horrifying attack on the well-known anime studio was the deadliest violent crime in decades in famously safe Japan and shocked the country. Suffering severe burns, Aoba is transferred from hospital in Kyoto to another hospital in Osaka.

People injured in a fire are treated near a Kyoto Animation building in Kyoto, western Japan.

Media reports at the time said Aoba told police he had taken the action because the studio had plagiarized his novel. Apparently, he still can not feed himself or walk on his own.

In response to Aoba's arrest, Kyoto Animation said in a statement, "We have nothing to say to the suspect.Our fellow workers whose lives were lost will never come back and the wounds of our colleagues will never be healed".

The studio, known by its fans as KyoAni, is well known outside Japan for its role in producing popular TV anime series, including The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, K-ON! and Violet Evergarden.

"KyoAni artists spread joy all over the world and across generations with their masterpieces".

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