The history of cults in Japan

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Cult raided
Mainichi Shimbun, Thursday 25 November 1999. Controversial cult Life Space was hit with nationwide police raids because of finding a mummified body of a cultist, and nine children were taken into official care. Takahashi founded Life Space as a self-enlightenment group in 1983 in Osaka Prefecture and at its peak from the late 1980s to early 1990s, the it drew nearly 10,000 people to its seminars.
New religious cult under fire for fraud
Mainichi Shimbun, Tuesday 30 November 1999. Following the furor surrounding AUM Shinrikyo, Ho No Hana Sanpogyo, is being by people demanding the return of exorbitant fees they paid to take part in religious rites that were supposed to relieve them from earthly troubles.
Cult shocker
Mainichi Shimbun, Saturday 22 January 2000. Leaders of a commune refered to as the Kaeda Cram School, where the mummified bodies of two children were found, had the father access to his boy, Junichiro Higashi, head of the communite told the father that if he left the child alone, the boy would get better.
Foot cult bigwigs admit to fraud
Mainichi Shimbun, Thursday 8 June 2000. Suspects linked to the foot-reading cult admitted to the group's fraudulent acts. A former senior cult member said they would heal the diseases of participants.
Cult to return ‘brainwashed’ member's assets
Mainichi Shimbun, Thursday 1 February 2001. Presiding Judge Yukihiro Okahisa ruled that Kofukukai-Yamagishikai, a cult that operates farming communes, was acting unfairly in refusing to return assets to a 52-year-old Yokohama woman after she severed her links to the organization.

Unification Church (Moonies)

Once-generous Japanese become disenchanted with Moon's church
By Kevin Sullivan and Mary Jordan, Washington Post, 4 August 1996.
Widow paid Church $400,000 to end husband's ‘suffering in hell’
By Kevin Sullivan, Washington Post, 4 August 1996. Rev. Sun Myung Moon's Unification Church.

AUM Shinrikyo (The AUM Supreme Truth)

From the Anti-AUM Movement to the Elimination of all Heterodoxies
By Kenichi Asano, Professor of Journalism, Doshisha University, 4 June 2000. A defense of the AUM cult by marginalizing its terrorist members. Contrasts persecution of the AUM with the indifference to the association of the Shinto faith with war crimes.
Cult Re-emerges With Recruits Thirsting For Spirituality
By Suvendrini Kakuchi, IPS, 10 June 1998. Its leader is in police custody and many of its former members marginalised, but the religious cult behind the deadly nerve gas attack on a Tokyo subway three years ago is growing again due to apathy in Japanese society and the total alienation felt by many young people here.
AUM's true colors
Mainichi Shimbun 30 September 1999. The cult was supposed to have disbanded as a religious sect, but about followers have continued as a voluntary organization. The cult's followers are engaged in disputes with more than 20 communities whose residents have called for their eviction. Many local government officials believe that the cult has not changed its ways.
Gov't promises to keep eye on AUM
Mainichi Shimbun Thursday 20 May 1999. The government will try to relieve people's anxieties about a possible resurgence by the AUM cult. A group of Diet members asked that the government take legal measures to regulate the cult's activities.