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Tokyo cops arrest ‘lawyers’ serving Kabukicho overcharging victims

Junichi Takahashi and Kazuki Ono
Junichi Takahashi and Kazuki Ono

TOKYO (TR) – Tokyo Metropolitan Police on Friday announced the arrest of two men claiming to be legal experts for victims of the tactics of disreputable clubs on charges of fraud, reports Sports Hochi (June 19).

At the end of May, Junichi Takahashi, 32, and Kazuki Ono, 45, are alleged to have posed as lawyers and fraudulently collected 500,000 yen from a 23-year-old male who had sought assistance in the return of 120,000 yen from a hostess club in the Kabukicho red-light district of Shinjuku Ward.

Both suspects have denied the charges.

The victim had been conned in a bottakuri scam, which is the substantial inflation of a bill. In promoting their services, the suspects described themselves to the victim as fuzoku bengoshi, or sex club lawyers.

The suspects told the victim that they would be able to return to him more money than he had lost to the club. The 500,000 yen was considered a commission.

Last month, metropolitan police announced an intensification of patrols to combat an increase in clubs violating a metropolitan ordinance that prohibits bottakuri.

Between January and April, police received approximately 1,000 complaints of overcharging at hostess clubs in Kabukicho. The figure is 10 times larger than that of one year ago.