Yakuza

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Blog   |   Japan

Japanese press advocates face 50 lawsuits, broken ribs

Nishioka (CPJ)

Kensuke Nishioka, 42, looked different from the other Japanese journalists I encountered in Tokyo during a February trip. Maybe it was the pink hair. “Don’t believe any journalist who says they’re at risk in Japan,” he declared, shrugging off the time, at age 32, when two members of a nationalist group cornered him in his office, broke his ribs, and injured three others in protest against an article he wrote. (Police arrested and charged the attackers.) Or the following year when the Japanese mafia, the yakuza, kidnapped him for a day and threatened him to stop reporting.

March 9, 2010 5:24 PM ET

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Blog   |   Japan

'Erase it, or be erased': Life on a Japanese mafia hit list

  As a writer from 1993 to 2005 at Japan’s Yomiuri Shinbun newspaper, Jake Adelstein built up a network of police, yakuza, and media contacts. (CPJ) A polite man in a suit gave investigative reporter Jake Adelstein the message from a leader of one of Japan’s organized crime groups when he was first working on the story back in 2005: “Erase it, or be erased.” Adelstein backed off, but he didn’t stop researching Tadamasa Goto, a thuggish leader of the Japanese mafia, or yakuza. The second time, there was no message. In 2008, it was Adelstein’s sources who informed him his relentless inquiries had crossed a line. Don’t go home, they told him—Adelstein is originally from Missouri—America would not be far enough.
February 24, 2010 9:49 AM ET

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