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NPA chief: New anti-gang measures aiming to restrict yakuza activities

NPA chief: New anti-gang measures aiming to restrict yakuza activities
Public safety commissions in 5 prefectures in Kyushu intend to inhibit the activities of gangs
TOKYO (TR) – The re-categorization of three organized crime groups by public safety commissions of five prefectures in Kyushu is intended to inhibit the gangs’ activities, said the director of the National Police Agency on Thursday, reports the Sankei Shimbun (Dec. 27).

“The expectation is that the activities of organized crime groups will be restricted,” said director Yutaka Katagiri. “We are looking forward to the results.”

On Thursday, the commissions in Fukuoka and Yamaguchi prefectures were expected to deem the Kudo-kai as a “dangerous” group. The Dojin-kai and Kyushu-Seido-kai are to be marked as “combative” in Kumamoto, Nagasaki, Saga, and Fukuoka prefectures. The designations are a part of a revision to the Anti-Organized Crime Law initiated in October.

The goal is to further control the yakuza groups as such labels will allow law enforcement to arrest gang members without the issuing of a cease and desist order if illegal demands are made towards ordinary citizens.

The Kudo-kai will be labeled “dangerous” for a one-year period. The extortion of a citizen by a gang member will be met with an immediate arrest. The group has been suspected to have been involved in a number of attacks upon citizens in the Kita Kyushu area of Fukuoka over the past year.

Likewise, the “combative” designation, which extends for three months, is in force to prevent yakuza groups that from posing harm to citizens who have attempted to eradicate them.

As of December of last year, says the Sankei Shimbun (Dec. 27), the Kudo-kai had approximately 1,020 regular and associate members, with the Dojin-kai and Kysushu Seido-kai enlisting 1,150 and 500 gangsters, respectively.

Last summer, a series of attacks and threats — in which gangsters were suspected to be responsible — befell citizens in the Kokura Kita nightlife area. The incidents followed the posting of an anti-gang emblem outside some restaurants and bars.

“I am committed to an effective operation of the system, thorough investigations of the incidents, and the protection of the persons concerned,” said the NPA’s Katagiri of the attacks. “I want to take all measures possible to ensure the safety of our citizens.”