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Yakuza eligible for gov't Y12,000 handout

37 Comments

In the hope of jump-starting the economy, the government has earmarked some 2 trillion yen this fiscal year in the form of direct handouts and other subsidies.

According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, all Japanese with legally registered domiciles, as well as foreign nationals, who were registered on or before Feb 1, 2009 will eligible for the handouts.

The standard amount will be 12,000 yen per person, with those over age 65 or under age 18 receiving 20,000 yen. A household consisting of a married couple with two children under 18, for example, would receive 64,000 yen.

When the question was posed as to whether the approximately 80,000 members of the nation's 22 designated criminal syndicates -- referred to in the media as “boryokudan” -- will also be on the receiving end of the government’s largess, the answer was, almost certainly yes. When and if the system is implemented, simple mathematics says that 960 million yen will move from the national treasury to members of organized criminal syndicates.

Apparently, Sankei Shimbun (Feb 15) reports, the hoods are hurting as badly as everyone else.

“With the recession, the gangsters’ means of generating revenues are way down,” says attorney Yukio Yamanouchi, a former adviser to the Kobe-based Yamaguchi-gumi, the nation’s largest syndicate. “Whatever activities they attempt, they’ll be nabbed by police. So they’re really between a rock and a hard place.”

While it’s possible some hoods may waive the handout, Yamanouchi thinks they’ll accept it. “Even though the amount isn’t that big, I suppose they’ll be glad to receive it,” he shrugs.

The above exception notwithstanding, the article notes that the general trend to bar gangsters from public services, such as welfare payments, has been accelerating. In March 2006, the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare issued guidelines to prevent welfare subsidy payments from falling into the hands of members of criminal syndicates. Other measures, such as exclude gangsters from public housing, have also been adopted on a nationwide basis.

Despite such efforts, an Osaka municipal official tells Sankei he’s concerned part of the handouts are indeed likely to flow into yakuza coffers.

An unnamed police official agrees. “Not only is there a chance the gangs will get their hands on some funds via indirect means, but it’s extremely vexing to think that even the top boss of the Yamaguchi-gumi will be entitled to receive tax money. As long as there’s no means of excluding gang members from receiving handouts, all we can do is devise other methods to keep the gangs from using the handouts as a source of revenues.”

© Japan Today

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37 Comments
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This seems stupid - granted I didn't read the entire article - of course criminals will have access to the money because the government is handing out the money to families.

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Well it's just as scandalous that politicians, celebrities and countless other people who have no financial worries whatsoever are entitled to this handout as well.

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even worse, they'll probably shake people down for their 12,000 yen too

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that's a pretty stupid article

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japanidol, is the article more, or less stupid, than dispensing public funds to members of illegal criminal syndicates?

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Well given that Yakuza are at least one rung further up society's ladder in Japan than foreigners, of course they will receive money.

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Beelzebub - I would say more stupid.

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Hey, if he's a criminal, or a member of an "illegal syndicate", they can just arrest him when he goes to pick up his check.

This kind of issue reminds me of the whole whaling for research issue.

The Japanese tie themselves in knots because...well...because they're Japanese.

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There are all sorts of people you could exclude on a moral basis, but that's not the point. Point is whether it will work as an economic stimulus. If they really want it to work, give it only to temporary workers who lost their jobs in the last year - those people have to spend the money, as they have none.

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so if they have the list with the members of the mafia guys, why on earth don't they do anything about it? Soldave, I saw on TV a few years ago, they were investigating the stupid apartment rental system. It turned out that regarding how difficult is to rent a place, the order was pet owners, prostitutes and yakuza and finally, on the bottom of the barrel, gaijins.

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When the question was posed as to whether the approximately 80,000 members of the nation’s 22 designated criminal syndicates

Guys, now you see who runs this country. GoJ knows how many of them exist, who they are but still do nothing about it. Why? Simple, because give away 12,000 is nothing comparing with what they will gain in return. What foreigner give them in return? Well...taxes and image of how international Japan is.

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“Whatever activities they attempt, they’ll be nabbed by police. So they’re really between a rock and a hard place.” poor thing... try legal stuff next time...

"simple mathematics says that 960 million yen will move from the national treasury to members of organized criminal syndicates." individual chinpira can keep their money (Inagawa-kai December 2008 news letter).

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Yes they will get a big chunk of the stimulus package...and they will get it legally through Pachinko addicts. At least 15/20% of it.

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What a ridiculous article.

The payment is designed to stimulate the economy. It is not envisioned to help people in need other than the fallout from the hoped for boost the economy will enjoy.

Yakuza and chinpira would be far more likely to spend the money as opposed to paying off debt or banking it so they will perform their duty 'admirably' in this situation.

If the point of an article is to denigrate the yakuza and castigate society for allowing its existence, then that should be the subject matter. This stretch does not even qualify as journalism.

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They will use it to drink and eat. What is wrong with that? Where do we pick up our money?

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I knew I should have registered my criminal enterprise.

all Japanese with legally registered domiciles, as well as foreign nationals, who were registered on or before Feb 1, 2009 will eligible for the handouts

Awarded how?

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there should be a kuchikomi article everyday, like garfield or peanuts.

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just pointing out the obvious here but clearly organised crime in Jpn is defacto legal, Jpn just pretends its illegal & does nothing about it, except allow the yakuza to as japanese as sushi kyoto or kimono

shouganai ne! Same ole..

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Yakuza is maybe same as US defense contractors or EU oil corp's.

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nice try asara, but no.

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Here's the reality - it is not illegal to be a self-identified member of a crime syndicate. It is, naturally, illegal to be engaged in the various ways these syndicates fund themselves. But... if we're talking about yakuza members who are not in jail, what we are really talking about is a self-identified member of a crime syndicate who has not been found guilty of committing any crimes. And say what you will, I don't find it odd at all that saying you are part of a group is not illegal.

So to me the real question is: are people in jail eligible to receive the check?

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What peeves me is I pay my income tax and I am not eligible because I am not a resident of Japan! In general I think this stimulus plan is just a vote-buying plan from the LDP, but even if it passes, I don't think people will be motivated to vote for the LDP.

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What a benevolent government! You crap on the homeless people by denying them handouts unless they register a residence, but you are willing to hand criminals free money! The logic of this escapes me! This really is a vote buying scheme more than anything else. I'm sure the Yakuza are great supporters of the LDP!

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Is there a list of the 80,000 yakuza? When they go to the city hall to do some procedure, do they write "gangster" as their job?

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I agree with some comments here, why give it too KNOWN criminals when homeless and out of work gaijin who pay their Japanese taxes need it more!

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terebiko:

All Japanese citizens, and two million foreigners will be eligible to receive JPY 12,000 each. In addition to all Japanese citizens, the government's first plan permitted payments only to foreign residents holding "permanent-resident" visas, and foreigners married to Japanese nationals and holding "spouse" visas. The revised plan excludes only foreign tourists and illegal aliens. The Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry said two million foreigners will be eligible.

http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/263829

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So does this actually mean that foreign students are eligible?

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Under the "freedom of association" clause of the Japanese constitution, mere membership of an organisation cannot by itself constitute a criminal offence. That's why even as Aum and Chongryon face crackdowns, membership is still legal. If they haven't been convicted by a court of specific crimes, who is to say that they are not entitled to what everyone else is entitled to?

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all Japanese with legally registered domiciles, as well as foreign nationals, who were registered on or before Feb 1, 2009 will eligible for the handouts.

I just think it's stupid that this articles specifies Yakuza when it's clear that Japanese society includes many types of parasites - not all are organized crime members.

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Is there a list of the 80,000 yakuza? When they go to the city hall to do some procedure, do they write "gangster" as their job?

Seriously! Of course Yakuza are going to get money, as will people who smoke, people who apply their makeup on the train, bankers, and other undesirables.

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The Yukaza are also hit by the financial crisis so they need this handout, and the handouts from the people in their control area, off course

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The LDP is just saying thanks to their power base.

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and yet some like myself,who have been here paying taxes for 14 years,won't get a sniff of it.I got taxed 85000 yen this month! What do I get for all my non-voluntary contributions to Japan? Zilch.

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So what about hookers? Do they get extra to relieve the financial difficulties of their pimps, too?

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Here's the reality - it is not illegal to be a self-identified member of a crime syndicate. It is, naturally, illegal to be engaged in the various ways these syndicates fund themselves. But... if we're talking about yakuza members who are not in jail, what we are really talking about is a self-identified member of a crime syndicate who has not been found guilty of committing any crimes. And say what you will, I don't find it odd at all that saying you are part of a group is not illegal.

WTF are you talking about...?

An organized crime syndicate, by it's very nature, is illegal... Now whether the JN Gov't is stupid enough to let it exist, is another matter.

You would never hear any Mafioso in NY or Chicago openly acknowledging their membership in any criminal organization...

You know why... Because the minute they start acting like these Japanese gangs, they will get too much unwanted attention from the Feds...

You see there's this little statute called, RICO... And it basically makes it Illegal to operate as an Organized crime syndicate...

And if that isn't enough, there's another agency that takes care of all the other catch 22's that RICO doesn't cover... It's called the I.R.S.

Japan is such a silly country...

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Osakadaz -

What do I get for all my non-voluntary contributions to Japan?

You get the right to live and earn money here as a foreigner. You get access to a lot of free or very cheap public services (think libraries and others). I'm a foreigner myself (although I have permanent residency). The only right I don't get is the right to vote.

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mindovermatter -

Uh... what? Sorry, you're missing the point. What is ILLEGAL is what is AGAINST THE LAW for that country. Happy to hear you talk about RICO, blah blah blah, but it is totally, completely, and utterly irrelevant to Japan.

In Japan, and I repeat myself, it is not illegal to be a self-identified member of a crime syndicate (see post above.)

But thank you so much for helping educate poor, silly Japan about the clearly far superior law enforcement in the US. How is that crime rate treating you, by the way?

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