TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested a 70-year-old for allegedly extorted a shoe store in Shibuya Ward out of nearly 200,000 yen by posing as an upper-level member of the nation’s largest criminal syndicate, reports NHK (July 3).
On June 3, Koichi Takahashi, a resident of Kita Ward, entered the store and allegedly threatened personnel. “I am the number-three Yamaguchi-gumi boss,” the suspect claimed before obtaining 120,000 yen in cash on hand from the store and 70,000 yen in the possession of a male employee.
Takahashi denies the allegations. “I did not intend to make any threats,” the suspect is quoted by police, who have not been able to confirm that he is in fact a gang member.
The suspect became a person of interest after an analysis of security camera footage.
Police are investigating Takahashi for a series of similar crimes that have taken place in Shibuya over a two-month period beginning in April in which the amount lost totaled 500,000 yen.