The registered owners of the vehicles used last month in the beating death of a restaurant manager at a club in the Roppongi entertainment area have been identified, reports weekly tabloid Friday (Oct. 26).
The two vans used to transport the gang of thugs that assaulted and killed 31-year-old Ryosuke Fujimoto have been traced by investigators to a man in his 20s and a company director once affiliated with the bosozoku motorcycle gang Kanto Rengo.
To recap, early on September 2, a group of men in ski masks and armed with metal bats arrived at Flower and assaulted Fujimoto, who was drinking in the club’s VIP room with a party of five or six persons. The 31-year-old suffered substantial head injuries and was transported to a nearby hospital, where he died one hour and 20 minutes later.
Footage released by police shows nine men, many in dark jackets and pants, moving toward Flower at 3:40 a.m. The suspects are seen fleeing the scene in two vans (one white the other black) at 3:45 a.m.
Friday visited the Tokyo home of the registered owner of the white vehicle. The unidentified man, in his 20s and standing approximately 170 cm, told’s the tabloid’s reporter from his doorway that he had nothing to say regarding the matter. Investigators on September 30 announced that an interview with the owner revealed that he had lent the van out on the day of the murder.
On October 4, officers searched the registered address of the owner of the black vehicle, a venture capital company in Shibuya Ward. Friday says that the company’s 30-year-old director is a former member of the Kanto Rengo-affiliated group called Miyamae Gurentai, whose former member, Rion Ito, was arrested in the infamous 2010 assault of kabuki star Ebizo Ichikawa.
When Friday phoned the venture firm’s offices, a female representative said that the director was on a long-term business trip. She added that five or six other Kanto Rengo-affiliated members were also unavailable as they were traveling in Shanghai, Beijing, and Hawaii.
On September 21, club Flower reopened under the name Studio Gate. The club was busted soon after for allowing after hours dancing.
A person affiliated with organized crime says that Fujimoto and Kanto Rengo experienced some trouble related to drugs. “On his mobile phone, he had many numbers for Kanto Rengo members,” says the underworld source. “So it is clear that he was running with that kind of crowd.”
An officer affiliated with the investigation says that extradition of the Kanto Rengo members will not be attempted. “The police will question them upon their return,” says the officer. “The organized crime division of the Tokyo Metropolitan Police is now investigating the venture capital company. They said the van was loaned to someone around the time of the incident.”
The venture company also told the police that its director will return to Japan at the end of October. (K.N.)
Source: “‘Medashibo shudan’ toso sharyo mochi nushi wo honshi chokudaki!” Friday (Oct. 26, pages 28-29)