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Tokuryū, a new crime threat in Japan, emerges from the shadows

Japan’s introduction of laws and regulations against organized crime in recent years forced the yakuza into hiding, but in the wake of this comes a new threat in the form of the tokuryū — quasi-gangsters who thrive on anonymity and a lack of structure – with even ordinary people turning to crime.

The rise of ‘dark’ part-time jobs that ensnare young people in illegal activities, blurring the boundaries between the underworld and ordinary citizens, testifies to the growing presence of these quasi-gangsters in society.

Unlike the yakuza, who have a hierarchical structure and strict codes of conduct, tokuryū lack a clear organizational structure, and the geographic scope of their activities is wide, even reaching overseas – the infamous Luffy crime gang that operated out of the Philippines is one such example . .

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