Mask May Hide Monkey Mischief

Masked macaque could attack Tokyo police handout monkey H1N1 flu wanted poster Police are warning Tokyo residents the wild Shibuya monkey may use the mass mask H1N1 flu hysteria to venture out and cause trouble. Police say if the monkey puts on a mask, it will be easier for the simian to slip out of its hideout and blend in with mask-wearing citizens.

The macaque monkey turned up unescorted in Shibuya train station in Tokyo the morning of August 20, 2008. Rush hour crowds scattered as the monkey scampered around the station. The monkey rested atop a timetable sign while cops below stretched green netting to trap the macaque. But the monkey was too quick for the cops and ran out of the station.

The monkey, nicknamed "Makawaii", has been seen in the Tokyo city limits on several occasions. It’s believed the monkey has been posing as a "net cafe refugee" and living in an internet cafe in Tokyo. Messages have been regularly posted by "Makawaii" on the internet messaging service Twitter. The monkey claims it is being given a net cafe cubicle free of rent in return for doing janitorial work at the outlet.

Tokyo cops are distributing an updated Masked Monkey Most Wanted poster door-to-door. The A4-size handout shows 4 computer-enhanced images of the mask-wearing monkey. The handout also include tips on how to spot a sick monkey. Police say the monkey has probably been indoors for several months and is likely to wildly celebrate any time spent outdoors by drinking too much beer and sake, and possibly stripping and chattering loudly in a city park. Officials are advising citizens to carry green netting at all times, and to report any monkey-like mischief.

Translation of the police handout, from top:
Wanted ! The Shibuya monkey might wear a flu mask! *Computer image. Symptoms of flu in macaque monkeys. Weight loss. Delusional. Paranoia. Call 110 if you see this monkey!

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