Viewer sends human remains to Japan TV station

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TOKYO--Japanese police are trying to identify cremated human remains that were mailed to the headquarters of a TV station by a viewer who was incensed at missing a cartoon.

A plastic bag containing ashes and shards of bone was delivered to TV Tokyo along with a note protesting TV Tokyo's decision to extend live coverage of the world table-tennis championships.

The viewer wrote that he had set his video to record the popular Inukami cartoon.

"Many of the people who watch our animated programs are very enthusiastic about them and we did receive a number of letters and e-mails complaining about our decision to continue the table-tennis coverage," said Tom Oki, a spokesman for the channel. "This one seems to have been a big fan of the show."

Police were called as soon as the bag was opened, Oki said, and the remains are being tested for DNA. He added that the police do not appear to be very optimistic that they will be able to identify the remains as the pieces of bone are quite small.

"We sometimes receive threatening letters and every once in a while a knife in the post, but I've never heard of human ashes being sent before," Oki said.

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