“How about a massage, Mr. Yang?”
We can do the real thing.”
The women were relentlessly calling out to men on the street, pulling on their arms, and forcing them into the store.
On June 13, the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department arrested five Chinese nationals, including Yang Yaoqin, 64, the manager of a private massage parlor “Yasuragi” in Shimbashi, Minato-ku, on suspicion of violating the Entertainment Establishments Control Law (touting). One denied part of the crime, while the other two admitted to it.
Yang’s store is said to be a massage parlor, but in fact it was a sex store offering sexual services in a private room. The female employees were performing indecent acts using oil containing natural extracts of Japanese herbs.
It is said that the female employees were touting to men by saying, “You can choose a cute girl. The building in which the store was located is in an area where adult entertainment businesses are prohibited, so the police are investigating additional crimes as well.
110 calls increased by 90 in one year.
In Shimbashi, where there are many government offices and businesses in the area, the number of problems caused by touts is increasing rapidly. According to the Metropolitan Police Department, there were approximately 320 calls to the 110 number last year related to touts. Compared to the year before last (2009), the number increased by 90 cases.
In June of this year, Hitomi Takano, 53, the owner of “Pub Smile” in Shimbashi, was arrested on suspicion of violating the Tokyo Metropolitan Government’s anti-bargaining ordinance. She demanded an exorbitant fee from a man in his 50s who was taken to the restaurant by a tout. The man drank about five drinks in four hours after 2:00 a.m. and was charged 370,000 yen.
When the man refused to pay, Takano became furious. He said, “Pay up! You should pay up because we have a clear accounting! A police officer happened to be standing by while the man was struggling in front of an ATM, and the man was able to avoid paying the hefty bill.
The police are warning people to be careful in Shimbashi, where touting and rip-offs are on the rise.
PHOTO： Shinji Hasuo