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Shoko Asahara

Chizuo Matsumoto, better known as Shoko Asahara is the founder of the Japanese Aum Supreme Truth cult.

Partially blind since birth, Matsumoto was enrolled in a school for the blind as a child. He used his partial sight to extort money and favors from his fellow students. While working as a masseur, he also ran a quack medicine[?] business.

As the guru of Aum, Asahara sold preparations based on his hair, blood, nail clippings and bath water. He preached sexual abstinence and moderation while enjoying the sexual favors of his followers and buying expensive cars and elaborate meals.

Asahara is currently in Japanese custody and faces 27 murder counts in 13 separate indictments. Prosecutors demanded the death penalty when they presented final arguments on April 24, 2003.

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