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Flashback: 10 years since Korean host club crackdown netted 50

TOKYO (TR) – It was 10 years ago on Tuesday that Tokyo Metropolitan Police announced the bust of two Korean host clubs and roundup of 50 persons for licensing and immigration violations, reports Fuji News Network (Sept. 11) in a flashback.

At around 3:30 a.m. on September 9, 2008, police raided club New Mikado in the Akasaka area of Minato Ward and arrested the manager, a 25-year-old Korean national, on suspicion of operating the club at hours that violated the Law Regulating Adult Entertainment Businesses.

Officers also searched Riverside, another Korean host club located in the Ueno area of Taito Ward.

Under the law, such a business must be closed between 1:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m., police said. In addition to the manager of New Mikado, four other persons were arrested for the same violation.

in Tokyo's Taito and Minato wards
In 2008, police raided host clubs in Tokyo’s Taito and Minato wards for licensing and immigration violations (Twitter)

Police also rounded up 45 other persons, including Korean hosts, from both clubs for the Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Act by overstaying their visas. A total of 20 persons were referred to the Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau.

The customers of New Mikado and Riverside were primarily Korean hostesses. Between June and September of that year, Riverside accumulated 48 million yen in sales, police said.

The busts coincided with the rise in interest in Japan of Korean culture (such as the television drama “Winter Sonata”) and pop music, including all female groups like Kara and Girl’s Generation.