Being a member of the Yakuza isn’t illegal in Japan. - FactzPedia

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Being a member of the Yakuza isn’t illegal in Japan.

 

Being a member of the Yakuza isn’t illegal in Japan.


To say that the Yakuza has a complicated relationship with the Japanese police is an understatement.

While any criminal activities they conduct are undoubtedly illegal, simply being a member of the Yakuza isn’t!

In fact, businesses associated with the Yakuza and even the Yakuza headquarters themselves are clearly signposted.

The word yakuza (“good for nothing”) is believed to have derived from a worthless hand in a Japanese card game similar to baccarat or blackjack: the cards ya-ku-sa (“eight-nine-three”), when added up, give the worst possible total. The origin of the yakuza themselves is difficult to determine, but they are thought to have descended either from gangs of rōnin (masterless samurai) who turned to banditry or from bands of do-gooders who defended villages from those same wayward samurai during the early 17th century. Their lineage may also be traced to bands of grifters and gamblers in Japan’s feudal period.

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