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New yakuza group forms in Japan; police on alert for violence

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Gangsters formed a new group here on April 30 after leaving the organized crime organization Kobe Yamaguchi-gumi over the collection of membership fees, police said, reported The Asahi Shimbun (Japan).

The formation of Ninkyo-dantai Yamaguchi-gumi was announced at a meeting held in a yakuza office in Amagasaki, Hyogo Prefecture. “Ninkyo-dantai” literally means “chivalrous organization,” and the new group said its purpose is “amity.”

Hyogo prefectural police are taking precautions against possible violence between the two organizations.
The new group said it does not have a leader, but Yoshinori Oda, 50, a former executive of the Kobe Yamaguchi-gumi, is representing the Ninkyo-dantai Yamaguchi-gumi.

Oda was also once vice leader of the Yamaken-gumi, the largest among gangs those constitute the Kobe Yamaguchi-gumi.
The Kobe Yamaguchi-gumi and the Yamaken-gumi have severed relations with Oda.

Gangs that plan to join the new organization include not only the Manabe-gumi and the Furukawa-gumi, both headquartered in Amagasaki, but also about 30 groups that were members of Kobe-based Yamaken-gumi.

After the gathering, Manabe-gumi leader Koji Ikeda, 50, criticized the money-collection methods of Kobe Yamaguchi-gumi chief Kunio Inoue, 68.

The criticism from Ikeda, who became the chief of headquarters of the Ninkyo-dantai Yamaguchi-gumi, was made in front of reporters, a rare thing for a gang leader to do.
The Kobe Yamaguchi-gumi was formed after gang members left the Yamaguchi-gumi, the nation’s largest crime syndicate, in 2015.

The National Police Agency, fearing an all-out war between the yakuza groups, designated the Kobe Yamaguchi-gumi a “criminal syndicate” under the anti-organized crime law in April 2016.
That designation gives police more authority to monitor and crack down on the gang’s activities.

If the NPA regards the formation of the Ninkyo-dantai Yamaguchi-gumi as a complete split from the Kobe Yamaguchi-gumi, the new organization would not be subject to regulations imposed under the anti-organized crime law.

That would make it impossible for police to issue orders to the new group to halt some of its activities.

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Tags: Japan, yakuza
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