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Kudo-kai no. 2 boss arrested for 1998 murder of fishery president

Fumio Tanoue
Fumio Tanoue (Nishi Nippon Shimbun)
KITAKYUSHU (TR) – Fukuoka Prefectural Police on Saturday apprehended Fumio Tanoue, 58, the number-two boss of the Kudo-kai organized crime group, for the murder of a fishery cooperative president, reports the Nishi Nippon Shimbun (Sept. 13).

Two days after an arrest warrant had been issued, Tanoue turned himself in to officers from the Kokurakita Police Station for the murder of Kunihiro Kajiwara on the night of February 18, 1998. Kajiwara (then age 70) was struck by four bullets at point-blank range as he stood in the street.

In 2002, a court convicted two members of the Kudo-kai for the killing of Kajiwara. However, recent investigations have yielded new evidence leading police to believe that upper management participated in the crime.

On Thursday, police arrested 67-year-old top boss Satoru Nomura at his home in Kokurakita Ward on the same charges and issued the warrant for Tanoue.

Over the past year, members of the Kudo-kai are believed to have participated in a series of violent incidents involving former personnel of the fishery cooperative or relatives of Kajiwara, whose killing, according to police, was due to his refusal to lend support to a marine construction project in which the Kudo-kai were affiliated.

Last December, Tadayoshi Ueno, 70, then the president of the same cooperative, was shot dead near his residence in Wakamatsu Ward. Ueno was the younger brother of Kajiwara.

A 28-year-old dentist, Ueno’s grandson, was stabbed as he commuted to work this past May.

In July, a former employee of the fishery cooperative was stabbed as she returned home from shopping.