Tokyo, May 22 (IANS) The police in Tokyo said on Wednesday that they have arrested a man in his sixties on suspicion of aiming a laser pointer at a US military transport aircraft flying close to the Yokota Air Base in the outskirts of the Japanese capital.
The police said they arrested Yoshinori Shigekawa, 60, for allegedly pointing the green laser beam at a C-130J plane on a training flight at around 6.30 p.m. (local time) on February 11 as it was flying in the vicinity of the base.
As a result of the incident, which can cause temporary blindness, the pilot of the plane with four personnel aboard was forced to abort the training mission, Japanese state broadcaster NHK reported.
The police said they found five laser pointing devices at Shigekawa’s home in Akiruno near the base and the suspect is believed to have been involved in multiple such cases over the past three years.
Shigekawa admitted to first using laser pointing devices to target US military planes three years ago, with the police looking into his possible involvement in some 40 similar cases reported around the Yokota facility.