Kyoto Animation is slowly recovering from a recent tragedy which took the lives of 35 employees this month. On July 18, a massive fire was set to the company's Studio 1, and the investigation looking into the alleged arson has been upsetting to millions. Thanks to a recent update, Kyoto Animation has updated fans on its status and the motivations of the man who reportedly set the blaze.
As reported by Japan Times, Kyoto Animation gave an important update to the public regarding the arson. Daisuke Okeda, a lawyer representing Kyoto Animation regarding the fire, said the arsonist had sent an unpublished novel of his to the company.
The suspect Shinji Aoba is said to have submitted a novel to the company in recent years. After he was arrested just outside the scene of the arson, Aoba reportedly told police he set fire to Kyoto Animation since they stole his novel. The company does hold public contests on occasion which accepts novel drafts to turn into anime projects with proper credit, but Okeda says Aoba's novel did not go anywhere within the company.
"We’re confident that none of the company’s products so far has any similarity [to the submitted novel]," the lawyer shared.
At first, Kyoto Animation said it had never received any drafts from Aoba, but a recent check showed the suspect had sent in a story. His name and home address were found in the company's records, and Okeda says Kyoto Animation overlooked the record as the novel failed to pass the contest's first-stage assessment.
Currently, the police are attempting to learn whether Aoba submitted his novel or whether another did so for him. The suspect has yet to be served an arrest warrant as Aoba is recovering from severe burns at an unknown hospital. In the meantime, Kyoto Animation is keeping the identities of those killed in the blaze quiet out of respect. Survivors recently returned to work as millions of fans worldwide continue to donate recovery funds to Kyoto Animation.