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NPA: Yakuza population aging

The Yamaguchi-gumi’s top boss, Shinobu Tsukasa, is 73 years old
The Yamaguchi-gumi’s top boss, Shinobu Tsukasa, is 73 years old
TOKYO (TR) – Members of organized crime syndicates are aging and varying their activities, a report from the National Police Agency revealed on Friday, reports Jiji Press (July 24).

In 2014, five percent of gangsters and affiliate members were in their 20s, a decrease from 11 percent in 2006. Meanwhile, membership among those in their 40s jumped from 60 to 74 percent over the same period.

The report concluded that the reduction in young recruits is causing the overall yakuza population to age.

Overall, the number of individuals with ties to yakuza gangs dropped from around 86,300 in 2005 to 53,500 last year.

A gangster quoted by police in the report said that a life of crime is very difficult and comes with an uncertain future.

Gangs are also diversifying their money-making activities. According to police, organized crime members accounted for 35 percent of all arrests for monetary fraud in 2014.

The report also indicated that gangs are participating in the reconstruction of the Tohoku area following the Great East Japan Earthquake of 2011. It also warned that organized crime may be targeting involvement in construction projects for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.