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    Here's What a North Korean Assassin's Toolkit Contains

    Written by

    Derek Mead

    The most disappointing aspect of Skyfall was the dorky new Q telling James Bond that ridiculous spy gadgets are a thing of the past. I suppose it was just a plot device to say “Hey, we’re not going to pretend we’re in the Cold War anymore,” but deadly assassin tools certainly aren’t a thing of the past. In fact, CNN has proof, in the form of a North Korean killer’s toolkit, shared for the first time by South Korean authorities.

    The toolkit contains a Parker pen replica that features a poison needle, another pen equipped with a poison bullet that lodges subdermally, and a small flashlight that contains a magazine of three bullets, two of which remain after South Korean authorities successfully fired a test shot. It’s all presented by a South Korean man who only allowed CNN to identify him as an “investigation official,” although CNN also said he is “familiar with North Korean assassination devices.” How’s that for cloak and dagger?

    The kit was confiscated from a North Korean defector and would-be assassin known only by his surname of Ahn, who last year was arrested trying to kill South Korean activist Park Sang-hak. Park is well-known for orchestrating leaflet campaigns, in which flyers attacking Pyongyang are sent floating over the DMZ into North Korea. Park had apparently been in contact with Ahn, who had been interested in funding Park’s work, and was on his way to meet him when Ahn was arrested by South Korean intelligence service. At the time, Park told authorities that Ahn had said he had formerly served with North Korea’s special forces, which might explain how he ended up as an assassin. In April, he was sentenced to four years in prison.

    Follow Derek Mead on Twitter: @derektmead.