TOKYO — A 30-year-old man told a court Tuesday that gangsters hired him to kill the top scientist in the doomsday cult accused of spreading nerve gas in Tokyo subways.
Hiroyuki Jo originally told police that he stabbed the man out of anger at Aum Supreme Truth, the cult accused in the March 20 attack that killed 12 people and injured 5,500 others.
But at a hearing in Tokyo District Court on Tuesday, he said he acted under orders from a gangster boss, now under arrest in the case. No motive was mentioned.
"I followed . . . instructions and committed murder," Jo told the court.
Hideo Murai, 36, was stabbed April 23 in front of a crowd of television cameras outside the cult's Tokyo headquarters. He since has been mentioned prominently in news reports about planning for the subway attack.
Cult guru Shoko Asahara and his top aides have been charged with murder in the subway gassing.