FUKUOKA (TR) – Following the arrest in September of a 47-year-old male with ties to organized crime on charges of prostitution, Fukuoka Prefectural Police last month also took the manager of a specialty pet cafe in the Hakata district into custody in the same case, reports the Yomiuri Shimbun (Oct. 22).
On October 21, officers charged Takashi Ito, the 39-year-old manager of a popular cafe featuring owls which may be handled by customers, with operating an out-call “delivery health” sex business in Kitakyushu between January and September.
The suspects are allegedly to have posed as females on deai-kei “encounter” matchmaking sites to recruit male customers for prostitutes.
According to officers, Yoichiro Matsubara, who was arrested in September, managed the prostitutes while Ito oversaw the entire business. Two others suspects have also been taken into custody.
Ito has reportedly denied the allegations, telling police that he did not manage the operation.
According to police, Matsubara has connections to the Kudo-kai organized crime group. Investigators suspect that the business was used to fund the gang.
The cafe, operated by Owl Company, features approximately 20 varieties of the bird. The company opened its first store in Osaka in June of last year, and Ito serves as a board member.