Coinciding with the enactment of anti-organized crime legislation last year, Tokyo Metropolitan Police have been focusing multiple investigations on a lavish club in upscale Nishi Azabu frequented by show biz personalities, reports Shukan Post (Feb. 3).
The club is owned by the former president of a real estate company that went bankrupt with liabilities of 10 billion yen. He was arrested for tax evasion in August 2009, in which he received a two-year sentence suspended sentence for four years. The Tokyo District Court ruled that the property was to be put up for auction.
“The club as well as the owner’s residence are inside the same apartment building,” a person involved in the investigation tells the tabloid. “There are nine apartments in the building, and eight were intended for auction. However, after the ruling, a friend of the owner filed a preliminary claim for ownership of the other unit. So it has become impossible to auction the whole building.”
(Shukan Post does not give the name of the club, but a Google search reveals it to be Geihinkan Nishi Azabu. The ex-president is Daisuke Shioda, whose former real estate company is called ABC Home.)
Located in a quiet residential area, the salon is a retreat in the center of the city for famous celebs to gather each evening.
“At first glance it appears to be a typically luxurious apartment, but a look inside really exemplifies just how luxurious,” says a regular customer. According to the club’s Web site, a private room serving steak dinners is located on the third floor. A bar and lounge occupies the floor above. The fifth houses a jacuzzi outfitted with a karaoke system.
The regular adds: “At night, the Roppongi skyline is visible. On the roof, there is a heated pool. Celebrities come often because it is something of a private space; they don’t have to worry about being seen. They can really have a good time in their own element. Real V.I.P.s head to secret, private rooms outfitted with baccarat and mahjong tables.”
(Shukan Gendai reported that Shioda was injured in an incident last year at Geihinkan that involved a former Yamaguchi-gumi member.)
And the clientele at the club included big names. A famous solo artist from the famous NHK New Year’s Eve “Kohaku Uta Gassen” show, a band vocalist, and a comedian are referred as “my best friends” to assembled guests. The president of a listed company that offers temporary staff services and the former member of famous idol group are also often invited to the club, where they are seen drinking with the owner.
(Shukan Bunshun reported last year in an article about organized crime and the entertainment world that singer Takako Uehara, of the idol group Speed, is a regular customer at Geihinkan. She subsequently filed a libel lawsuit against the publication.)
“A popular model who appears in women’s magazines comes frequently,” says an acquaintance of the owner of the club. “Usually when celebrities are around, there will be a few good-looking women sitting nearby. During the city’s fireworks shows, people move up to the rooftop. Fully clothed men and women can be seen taking the plunge into the pool. They are really debauched parties.”
According to the owner’s friend, the owner is working to solicit investors for overseas casino projects. He introduces celebrities to well-heeled, real estate moguls to establish trust.
However, it is the opinion of the Shukan Post journalist that this must create an uncomfortable situation for celebrities looking for women and alcohol.
The organized crime division of the Tokyo Metropolitan Police is currently investigating the relationship between the owner’s friend, who registered his name on one of the building’s units, and organized crime groups.
“The police want to establish the owner’s network as it relates to organized crime,” says the previously quoted investigator.
However, that would mean opening a real can of worms. “It will require investigating the world of show business and industries related to the owner,” the source adds. (K.N.)
Source: “Honshi kiho ‘geinojin maruhi saron’ ni iyoiyo ‘bohai sosa’ ga semaru!” Shukan Post (Feb. 3, page 154)