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Japan police plan arrests over nuclear parts-Kyodo

Written by: Staff
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TOKYO, Aug 25 (Reuters) Tokyo police were planning today to arrest several executives from a Japanese company suspected of exporting equipment that could be used in producing nuclear weapons, Kyodo news agency said.

Mitutoyo Corp, which produces precision measuring equipment, is suspected of exporting to Malaysia without a licence two devices that could be used in uranium enrichment, the report said.

Television showed police entering Mitutoyo premises in Kawasaki, near Tokyo.

A police spokesman said he had no information on the arrests, and no one answered the phone at the company's head office.

Police have been investigating possible export routes from Japan after a device made by the firm was found at nuclear facilities in Libya inspected by the International Atomic Energy Agency between December 2003 and March 2004, media reports said earlier this year.

Mitutoyo is also suspected of exporting equipment to Iran, and police have raided an Iranian trading company in Tokyo in connection with the case, Kyodo said.

Mitutoyo, founded in 1934, has some 2,300 employees in Japan and 2,000 overseas.

REUTERS VJ BST0724

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