Danger and Concern” of “Chinese Dragon” in the Ikebukuro brawl.
A brawl broke out on the 58th floor of a French restaurant in the “Sunshine 60” high-rise complex in Ikebukuro, Tokyo, involving about 100 members of the delinquent group “Chinese Dragon. The restaurant, where diners could enjoy the night view of the high-rise building, turned into a scene of a fight. The police have identified the group as “Chinese Dragon,” and are investigating the members who were present at the scene for possible assault and other charges.
The incident occurred on the night of October 16. A group of customers were holding a private party at a French restaurant in Sunshine 60, and soon after the party started, angry voices were heard and the restaurant called 110, saying that the customers were fighting with each other, although the reason was unknown. When police officers arrived, many had already left the scene, leaving several people, including a man who was bleeding from a head injury. At the venue, tables had been overturned and plates and glasses were left broken.
There are “1,500 people” in the country.
The party was held by members of Chinese Dragon, and the purpose of the party was to “celebrate the release” of the leader who had been serving time in prison. Some believe that a domestic dispute broke out, while others believe that a rival group, upon hearing that a release party was to be held, rushed to the party. In any case, the party ended early. It is not known if the food and beverage charges were paid, and the party was nothing but a nuisance to the restaurant.
The Chinese Dragon is said to have started as a motorcycle gang group called “DRAGON,” which was formed by second and third generation Chinese orphan children. Gradually, Japanese as well as Chinese orphans joined the group, and the organization grew in size.
According to police authorities, about 1,500 Chinese Dragons have been confirmed nationwide, with about 400 in Tokyo. The reality is that the police authorities are trying to keep track of the movements of the Chinese Dragons by compiling a database of the leaders, executives, and members of each group down to the very end of the organization.
Unlike designated boryokudan (organized crime groups), which are designated by the Public Safety Commission under the Anti-Boryokudan Law, the police authorities consider these groups to be “quasi-goryokudan,” which are dangerous organizations equivalent to boryokudan. In the press, they are sometimes referred to as “semi-gangs.
Regarding the brawl at Sunshine 60, a senior police investigator said , “Even though they have already fled, there are security cameras all over downtown Ikebukuro. By using a relay system to track the recorded images, it will not take much time to find out (the criminal group),” he said confidently.
Regarding the future investigation, he said, “First, we will probably build a case against the injured victim as a case of injury. He also pointed out that “there are things that need to be examined closely, not only the injury case, but also the damage caused to the restaurant by the brawl.
It is likely that a case could be made for destruction of property regarding the broken plates, glasses, broken doors, etc. in the store. That’s not all. The restaurant was unable to operate legitimately immediately after the incident due to the group brawl. We may also consider filing a case for obstruction of business with regard to this damage,” he said.
What are the “Concerns” of Police Officials?
However, he also pointed out that “the Chinese Dragon side may try to settle the situation, since it has been covered so widely in the news and has had such a large impact.
They may later pay the restaurant for the food and beverage or compensate for the damaged equipment so that they will not be held legally responsible for the damage. Injured members may not report the damage because they think it’s not cool to file a damage report and cry to the police. If no damage report is filed, the prosecutor may not prosecute…”
As for the restaurant, there is also concern about the reputational damage caused by the Chinese Dragon’s group brawl. If it becomes difficult to pursue criminal charges, society may be left with nothing but uncertainty. Although designated organized crime groups are subject to various regulations under the Violence Against Boryokudan Law, quasi-organized crime groups and semi-organized crime groups, Chinese Dragons, are outside the scope of the law, so new measures are required.
Interview and text by： Masahiro Ojima
Nonfiction writer. After working for Sankei Shimbun as a reporter for the National Police Agency, the Metropolitan Police Department, the Kanagawa Prefectural Police Department, the Judicial Press Club, and the National Tax Agency Press Club, he became a freelance writer. His recent books include "The True Story of the Yamaguchigumi Split" (Bungeishunju)