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Inagawa-kai members arrested in credit card fraud for sex clubs; Tokyo HQ raided

Takashi Yamaguchi
Takashi Yamaguchi of the Inagawa-kai (TV Asahi)

TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police on Monday arrested two upper members of the Inagawa-kai organized crime group for accepting proceeds acquired through a credit card fraud that facilitated payments to sex clubs, reports the Sankei Shimbun (Aug. 20).

Officers from the anti-organized crime division of the metropolitan police took Takashi Yamaguchi, 62, and Hirofumi Matsuyama, 46, into custody for receiving proceeds generated by criminal activities — a violation of the Act for Punishment of Organized Crimes. Both suspects have denied the charges.

The scheme involved establishing fake restaurant businesses that served to broker payments for customers at 30 sex clubs that were not able to accept credit cards. A 20 percent premium — as reported by the Mainichi Shimbun — was then added to the sex club fees, which the gangsters collected.

In March and April of this year, the suspects are alleged to have received 650,000 yen in funds provided by lower-ranking Inagawa-kai boss Kimihiro Tsukada, 65, currently under prosecution for computer-related fraud, through the gang’s jonokin system in which junior members funnel money to upper bosses. The Inagawa-kai’s headquarters in Tokyo’s Minato ward was among ten locations searched by police investigators on Monday.

Tsukada is believed to have supplied 11.3 million yen in funds to the suspects since November of 2010. Starting in September of 2005, Tsukada is suspected to have defrauded a total of 1.73 billion yen from credit card companies.

According to the Yomiuri Shimbun (Aug. 21), an arrest warrant has been issued for the number-two ranking member of the Inagawa-kai, 59-year-old Kazuo Uchibori.