TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police on Wednesday released a wanted poster for ex-Kanto Rengo bosozku motorcycle gang leader Shinichi Mitate over the beating death of 31-year-old restaurant manager Ryosuke Fujimoto last September, reports the Sankei Shimbun (Feb. 21).
In January, officers from the Azabu police station took a total of 15 suspects into custody on an initial charge of unlawful assembly with weapons over the incident that took place at club Flower in the Roppongi entertainment area. Nine of those suspects were slapped the additional charge of manslaughter at the end of that month.
In the early morning hours of September 2, a group of males in ski masks and armed with metal bats arrived at the club and assaulted Fujimoto, who was drinking in the club’s VIP room with a party of five or six persons. The victim suffered substantial head injuries and was transported to a nearby hospital, where he died an hour and 20 minutes later.
Many of those suspects fled Japan for such locations as Shanghai, Beijing, and Hawaii. According to investigators, the 33-year-old Mitate entered the Philippines on November 2 and has remained there since. Investigators are examining various means to hasten his return to Japan.
Police are also in the process of distributing 12,000 posters that include Mitate’s portrait.
The Kanto Rengo group broke up about 15 years ago but their members still operate in various forms. Former leader Taichi Ishimoto,, who was previously arrested in September for fraud related to a real estate transaction, participated in a drunken brawl involving kabuki star Ichikawa Ebizo in 2010.