Tetsuya Yamagami, the man who killed former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, told the police that he confused the politician with the head of the sect, whom he really intended to kill, the Mainichi Shinbun newspaper said, citing sources close to the investigation.
Yamagami admitted to the charges against him and stated during interrogation that he originally planned to kill a high-ranking leader of a local religious group, whom he did not name.
The police are conducting an examination of the suspect to establish his mental capacity and bring him to criminal responsibility.
Shinzo Abe was assassinated in the morning of July 8. The incident occurred during a campaign event in the Japanese city of Nara. A former Japan Self-Defense Force sailor approached the politician from behind and shot him from a homemade shotgun. Yamagami told investigators that he was unhappy with Abe's policies and wanted to kill him.
Oleg Kazakov, a senior researcher at the Japan Research Center of the Institute of the Far East of the Russian Academy of Sciences, believes that Yamagami, if recognized as mentally sane, could be sentenced to death by hanging, in accordance with the established law of Japan.
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