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Tokyo police arrest yakuza in fight at Asakusa festival

Kiyoshi Nakahara
Kiyoshi Nakahara

TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested a pair of gang members for a fight that broke out a festival in Taito Ward last year, reports TV Asahi (July 15).

In November, Kiyoshi Nakahara, a 55-year-old member of an affiliate gang of the Kobe Yamaguchi-gumi, allegedly beat the head of Koichi Narui, a 44-year-old member of the Yamaguchi-gumi, at the Tori no Ichi festival in the Asakusa area.

Narui, whose injuries required two weeks to heal, is also alleged to have assaulted Nakahara.

Both suspects, who have been charged with assault, admit to the allegations.

Held each November, the Tori no Ichi festival features vendors selling colorfully decorated bamboo rakes called kumade, which symbolize the collection of wealth or good fortune.

Just prior to the incident, Nakahara was walking in a group of five persons on the festival grounds when they happened upon Narui, who said, “It seems pretty distasteful for a person like you to be here.” The fisticuffs then ensued.

The Kobe Yamaguchi-gumi formed last summer following the dissolution of the Yamaguchi-gumi. According to Fuji News Network (July 15), police suspect that the dispute is connected to an ongoing dispute that his since developed between the two gangs.

On Friday morning, police raided the headquarters of the Yamaken-gumi, located in Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture in search of evidence in the case. The Yamaken-gumi is one of the key gangs that bolted from the Yamaguchi-gumi last year to form the Kobe Yamaguchi-gumi.