US denies Disneyland threatened

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department yesterday denied a published report that a Japanese cult was planning to release a deadly nerve gas at Disneyland during the crowded Easter weekend.

A department spokesman, Carl Stern, said there was no basis for a report in yesterday’s editions of The (Baltimore) Sun that authorities had stopped two Japanese men at Los Angeles International Airport a few days before the April 16 holiday and found instructions on how to make the highly toxic gas sarin. “That just didn’t happen,” Stern said.

The Sun had reported that the men were allegedly members of the Japanese cult suspected of releasing sarin in the Tokyo subway system last month, killing 12 people. The newspaper quoted federal officials who had requested anonymity.

Authorities also found a videotape containing images about the planned attack and other evidence that the theme park in Anaheim, Calif., was the target, The Sun said.

Disneyland released a statement late Friday saying it had received a threat to park visitors before Easter weekend and notified federal authorities. Disney said that the authorities, which it did not identify, determined the threat was a hoax.

Stern acknowledged that federal authorities had responded, as they do from time to time, to a reported threat at Disneyland but “this one, like others, turned out to be a false alarm.” He declined to discuss the source or nature of the threat.

The Pentagon had no comment, and officials at the Japanese National Police agency said they could neither confirm nor deny the report.

The Sun reported that Tokyo police had alerted the FBI this month that two Japanese men associated with the Sublime Truth sect were flying to Los Angeles. The newspaper could not determine whether the Japanese men were arrested or returned to Japan.

Vacation? Short break? Day trip? Get Skip-the-line tickets at GetYourGuide.


(Listed if other than Religion News Blog, or if not shown above)
Associated Press, via the Boston Globe, USA
Apr. 23, 1995

Religion News Blog posted this on Sunday April 23, 1995.
Last updated if a date shows here:


More About This Subject


Our website includes affiliate links, which means we get a small commission -- at no additional cost to you -- for each qualifying purpose. For instance, as an Amazon Associate, Religion News Blog earns from qualifying purchases. That is one reason why we can provide this research service free of charge.

Speaking of which: One way in which you can support us — at no additional cost to you — is by shopping at