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Repeated false rail crossing emergency stops lead to arrest of Osaka teen

The Osaka Prefectural Police headquarters. (Mainichi/Tsuyoshi Fujita)

DAITO, Osaka -- A 16-year-old boy is under arrest on suspicion of delaying JR Katamachi Line train services on a total of four occasions in mid-September by pushing the emergency stop button at a railway crossing, among other acts.

A source close to the case revealed that Osaka Prefectural Police had arrested the second-year high school student on suspicion of obstruction of business via fraudulent means. Operator West Japan Railway Co. (JR West) has reported similar cases taking place in September, and police are investigating potential links.

The suspect is alleged to have pushed the emergency stop button four times late at night over a period spanning Sept.11 and 16, at a crossing in Daito, situated between Shijonawate and Nozaki stations. It is alleged that he hindered the train service by pushing the button. The student has reportedly admitted to the accusations, saying, "It was fun to watch the trains make sudden stops."

When the incidents took place, regular and rapid service trains engaged their emergency brakes and other measures, resulting in delays of four to 15 minutes. Police received a report from JR West. It then checked security camera footage and received eyewitness information that revealed the student's suspected involvement.

(Japanese original by Akihiko Tsuchida, Osaka City News Department)

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