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​Japanese Man Arrested For Threatening Square Enix With Arson

​Japanese Man Arrested For Threatening Square Enix With Arson

A 40-year-old man in Japan has been arrested after threatening Square Enix with arson, in an attack he said would be "a repeat of Kyoto Animation". The man was referring to the fire started at Kyoto Animation's offices on July 18, an attack that killed 35 people and injured 34.

According to Siliconera, Kenichi Hiratsuka allegedly sent Square Enix messages on July 23 (the week following the attack on Kyoto Animation) that said "Give me back my money from your sh*t game" and "Do you want a repeat of Kyoto Animation?".

Tokyo police say that when questioned Hiratsuka said he "was pissed off at losing in a game, so I sent the mail".

Credit: PA
Credit: PA
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The attack against Kyoto Animation was committed by 41-year-old Shinji Aoba. He poured petrol inside the building before setting it alight and being caught in the blaze himself.

This is the second time this year that someone has been arrested for making threats against Square Enix. Back in March, a 25-year-old man who worked in a nursing home sent a death threat to the company after spending 200,000 yen (around £1,500) trying to get a particular in-game item. Square Enix stepped up security after he allegedly sent a message saying "[Square Enix] staff, I'm coming to kill you tomorrow. Purify your heads."

'Purify your heads' is a cultural reference to beheading.

Death threats are becoming an increasing problem in the game industry. Last week police in San Francisco investigated a threat made against Twitch's offices. And the developers of Ooblets have received tens of thousands of threats since announcing its delightful game was going to be an Epic Games Store exclusive on PC.

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Clearly it's a problem that anyone thinks they are justified in making death threats against a game developer.

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Featured Image Credit: Square Enix

Topics: video games, gamingbible, Square Enix

Julian Benson

Senior journalist at GAMINGbible. Former deputy editor of PCGamesN and news editor of Kotaku UK. Written for Eurogamer, PC Gamer, Rock, Paper, Shotgun, Wired, and GamesMaster. Author of 'Rags, Bones and Tea Leaves'. Contact: [email protected]