Here
and
Now

kuchikomi

Police, yakuza gear up 2020 Olympic battle

21 Comments

You've no doubt heard of the 30 Years War, the 100 Years War and perhaps even the Six Day War. According to Spa! (Oct 1), Japan is now on the verge of a "Seven Years War," to be fought between the nation's crime syndicates and the police. The "casus belli," of course, is Tokyo being picked to host the 2020 Summer Olympics.

On Sept 9, the first working day after the IOC meeting in which Tokyo was selected as the host venue, the National Police Agency and Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department met to establish an Olympics Task Force.

"This speedy reaction shows the police are in high spirits over the Olympics," says a reporter who covers the police for a nationally circulated newspaper, adding, "They're eager to clean up dangerous areas of 'anti-social' elements, and have already held numerous meetings. Even before the IOC decided on Tokyo, when the delegates visited here, the cops rounded up the homeless people in Yoyogi Park and moved them into apartments, out of sight. That's how badly they wished Tokyo would win."

Why? As veteran crime author Atsushi Mizoguchi writes, "Since large numbers of civil servants from the postwar baby boomer generation began retiring, the police have had a hard time placing their people in second careers via the 'amakudari' system. Hosting the Olympics is their golden opportunity. In addition to operations directly related to the Olympics, there will be secondary opportunities, like the new law they're trying to ram through in the Diet to permit opening of casinos. I can foresee confrontation between the police and gangs in areas where their interests have clashed before."

The juiciest prize is likely to be the rights to constructing some 10 projects, including the athletes' village, centered around Harumi in Tokyo's Chuo Ward.

Costs for new building facilities in Chuo Ward alone are estimated to reach 460 billion yen. The large general contractor firms will farm out the majority of work to subcontractors, which will hire construction companies which may have ties with organized crime. Other likely sources of revenues are as job brokers and demolition firms, both of which have long been known to have ties to gangs.

"If the police come out in force, then I suppose there will be less that trickles down to us," sighs a gang boss based in Kansai. "In a nutshell, the general contractor firms have their own business style. For instance, Company S tends to lean toward the police. Company K deals with both the police and gangs, and Company T tends to work closely with the yakuza. Of these, Company S has a lot of retired police officials in its ranks. Under the banner of compliance they are expected to work even harder at keeping out the 'antisocials,' so it's not going to easy for yakuza to get involved.

"I suppose at the most you'll see them using the gangs as subcontractors to recruit workers. But the Kodokai (the Nagoya-based, second-largest affiliate of the Yamaguchi-gumi, Japan's largest designated crime syndicate with an estimated 50,000 members) is likely to snatch up the really good opportunities."

According to the same source, yakuza are becoming increasingly impoverished and the situation for many is far worse than the average person realizes.

"Several years ago, the junior sub-bosses in the secondary gang affiliates used to easily clear multiples of 100 million in annual income," says the aforementioned source. "But after the newest wave of anti-gang regulations and other crackdowns, they have become increasingly estranged from society. All it takes is the smallest infraction to get arrested and slapped with fines. They're hard up for money."

During the games themselves, the yakuza are also expected to traffic in sex workers from South Korea and China as well as seek other ways to profit from the sex trade, which is likely to boom when and if casinos complexes open.

Spa! predicts that at this stage in the struggle for supremacy, it looks like the police will take the gold medals. If the cops do emerge victorious in the upcoming war, it provides a follow-up article titled "A Survival Guide for Low-income Yakuza."

© Japan Today

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

21 Comments
Login to comment

I honestly doubt the police will do anything serious. Not saying they are on yaks' payroll, but they never really messed with the yaks. Just on the surface.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

"the yakuza are also expected to traffic in sex workers from South Korea and China as well as seek other ways to profit from the sex trade"...

You left out yakuza trafficking women and girl-children from so-called Eastern Europe where human trafficking (not "sex trade") of female sex-slaves (not "sex-workers") continues. That you would use the word "traffic" and then actually continue with the neo-liberal positive illusion jargon is distressing. Well, it is better than nothing I suppose. At least you mentioned it.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Sadly, this is the first thing that came to mind when Tokyo won the bid. We all know that nothing's going to change, though.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

That you would use the word "traffic" and then actually continue with the neo-liberal positive illusion jargon is distressing.

I suppose the "you" that you're referring to is Spa's writer, since the article was translated from Japanese. I shudder to think how it would read if the translator felt obliged to alter the original story by sprinkling it full of politically correct euphemisms.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

You will hear much discussion about keeping the Yakuza out and studying the issue. End result: The mob will still get on the Olympics money train.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

They’re eager to clean up dangerous areas of ‘anti-social’ elements, and have already held numerous meetings.

As per usual, just talk and no action.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Here's an idea: instead of rounding up all the homeless and getting them out of sight to pretend the place is pristine and has no problems, how about you just round up the yakuza? Nah, making the gangs illegal and actually doing something about it would be a bit too much for the J-cops, I suppose.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

Im sure theyll be high fiving one another in no time.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Already the yaks are lining up to get paid.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Galapogos and Jin-

Well, you're both right, but Jin's got an important point.

Sure, there's lots of "legit" prostitution, but there's also lots of girls from overseas who, after being promised jobs singing or dancing or even being maids, are brought over here, injected with huge doses of speed over a short period of time, basically made into instant addicts of the drug, and then forced into prostitution. (By the way, after being forcibly addicted, they are made to pay for the drug out of their own money (from prostitution) thus guaranteeing they keep hooking and providing income to their "boss").

This will certainly increase with the olympics.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Gee @Lowly, maybe you should call Spa's editor and offer to write about that for their magazine.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

One thing it seems posters are missing that this blurb correctly points out. And that's that the police are also very much a "gang" of sorts, they pilfer colossal amounts thru amakudari & are very adept at inventing new ideas that require more keystones.

Which is more corrupt simply depends on the day in question, pick you poison!

Sadly will are stuck with both of these anti social groups!

8 ( +10 / -2 )

Galapagos-

Not sure if you are joking/ being sarcastic, but does SPa! pay well??

No, but to write about that stuff, I would have to get much closer to it than I want to. I am a weak human, barely capable of saving myself, or maybe one or two people close to me. I don't have the power to challenge those kinds of people and save whole classes of people right now.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

retired police officials

Doing manual labor? I do not think so.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

organized crime is better than disorganized for the everyday citizen. It would be nice if we lived in a world where criminals and dictators whom were overthrown were replaced by good people, but one need only look at recent history in areas like Iraq and Egypt to see that waging a war like this isn't always a good thing unless an extremely well thought out exit strategy is fully committed to at all cost.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Jin H.,

"That you would use the word "traffic" and then actually continue with the neo-liberal positive illusion jargon is distressing.

What's distressing is that you would attempt to take a very serious point, i.e., human trafficking, as an opportunity to appear -- at least at a cursory glance -- politically astute, in obvious ignorance of the reality that human trafficking, much less the vocabulary used to describe the concept, has been around for as long as humans have figured out how to exploit those weaker than themselves.

Any "positive illusion" you may be associating with the term "trafficking" is a burden you alone suffer, because no liberals I know see anything positive at all about this scourge. It also bears noting that human trafficking is not exclusively of the sexual slavery variety. There is also forced labor as well.

Ultimately, the idea of "trafficking" evokes a sense of some sort of consumable good being passed between seller and buyer, with nary a consideration put towards the rights or feelings of the person being traded. After all, products aren't people; so by definition can possess no rights to speak of.

Is there anything more horrific than to see a fellow human being reduced to the status of a inanimate tradable good? I think not.

In the end, it doesn't require a finely honed intellect to recognize that you can't simply boil the problems of the world down to something so trite and infantile as "Left versus Right."

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Is anyone really surprised??!!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I guess this means there won't be a yakuza parade during opening ceremonies?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Another front story to try to ease the public. This is not better than the shows on NHK showing Police standing at attention outside of the Koban and fighting crime. When was the last time you saw the police standing at attention instead of sitting in the Koban. The police here are basically in bed with the Yakuza. Like always, they will protect the yakuza for their own financial kickbacks and feedback.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I can see no positive outcome for clamping down on the Yakuza. Don't take that to mean I support them, I don't support crime at all, organized or otherwise. But as was pointed out in the article:

“But after the newest wave of anti-gang regulations and other crackdowns, they have become increasingly estranged from society. All it takes is the smallest infraction to get arrested and slapped with fines. They’re hard up for money.” Greed can make people very desperate. With desperation comes stupid decisions and violence. The situation will rapidly deteriorate over the next seven years. There'll be heavy violence between the gangs and the police, and rest assured, the gangs will be more motivated. I can see there being a war of sorts between yakuza and the police, and that means that the innocent citizens are going to get caught in the crossfire. While those two are busy fighting each other, gangs from other countries will seek to move in on vacated turf and set up shop. They'll only add fuel to the fire. No, it seems the only reasonable solution, even if it is despicable, is to tolerate the yakuza, to an extent. Provide them with just enough income to avoid violence, at least until the Olympics are over.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I think the Law enforcement aspects of these games will be way over thier heads just getting people in & out of these areas where the games will be played & the Yakusa will "Wet their beaks" to some degree- there is So Much $$$$ to go around!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites