An 18-year-old Girl Reveals the Shocking Situation in Umeda, Osaka, Where You Can Earn 2 Million Yen a Month and Some Girls Look like Idols | FRIDAY DIGITAL

An 18-year-old Girl Reveals the Shocking Situation in Umeda, Osaka, Where You Can Earn 2 Million Yen a Month and Some Girls Look like Idols

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A corner of Umeda, the center of Osaka, has become a lawless zone.

Within walking distance of Umeda Station is Togano-cho, a row of love hotels. On weekends, there are less than 20 women lined up in one of the narrow alleys known as American Street.

This is a scene from a day in Usagano-cho. Men were aggressively calling out to the standing women.

The women ranged in age from their teens to their 40s, and they were waiting to be approached by men, absentmindedly touching their cell phones. Some of the women looked like they could have been in an idol group, and they were being approached incessantly by many men. After a while, they seemed to have reached a negotiation and disappeared shoulder to shoulder into a nearby hotel.

While similar job in Shinjuku’s Okubo Park has become a social problem, a similar scene is spreading here in the center of Osaka. Many women and men gathered in this alley for the purpose of prostitution. Nao (a pseudonym), a woman in her early twenties, explains that she stands here two or three times a week.

There are about three times as many men as women standing there. Some days I stand for four hours, some days for one hour, but I still get three or four customers. They don’t stay all the time, but sometimes they leave when they get hungry and come back again. It’s that kind of ‘casualness’ that makes it easier to do this kind of job.

The women do not approach the customers on their own. However, when a reporter approached another woman, she said, “The market price is 15000 yen.”

The going rate is 15,000 yen plus hotel charges. The rest depends on the girl, but 20,000 without a condom, plus 10,000 yen for “Nakadashi”.

She explained in a clerical manner.

According to the girls and the men who flocked to them, the number of standing girls began to explode around the fall of 2022.

Between ’19 and ’20, a shocking incident occurred in which the Osaka Prefectural Police caught 61 “standing-up” (prostitutes who waited for customer while standing on the street) red-handed in the “Izumi no Hiroba” underground shopping center at Umeda Station. Three and a half years have passed since then, and the “standing-up” have moved to the nearby Usagano-cho. Perhaps they are already recognized as a tourist attraction, some young people were taking pictures of them with cell phones in hand, and there was even an argument between a YouTuber-like figure and a man who was staying here.

Under the nightscape of Kita, there are many desires swirling in the air.

There were also a few men sitting on the ground talking with a woman standing in this alley. Some of the male customerssw332 seemed to be uncomfortable with the sight. It seems that a faction has emerged in this place, which is less than 100 meters long. Nao continued.

“The girls from Kita who originally stood here and the women from Minami are completely different. There are girls who originally stood at Kintetsu Namba, and they are serious about their business. The Kita girls are old-timers, but they are not so hard working. Kintetsu Namba used to be lively, but the police have been working hard to catch them, and the girls from there seem to have drifted to Umeda. I used to work in Minami originally, but now I am afraid of the police. I heard that I was picked up the other day, and Umeda is safer, and the girls check each other out with the police, so it’s easier to manage the risk.”

This reporter also visited the area around Kintetsu Namba Station, which the woman had told him about, and was able to confirm about three women who certainly looked like them. Even so, Minami was not as vibrant as Umeda.

We wondered how much money these women were making. Mika (18 years old, pseudonym), who wears so-called “mine-type makeup” and mass-produced fashion, boldly states, “I earned 2 million yen a month.”

She says, “I earn about 1.3 million yen standing here, 300,000 yen from direct messages on Twitter (now X), and 400,000 yen from sugar-daddy activities. I don’t have sex with my sugar daddy, but I earn 100,000 yen just for a meal. Even so, I am totally in demand. I haven’t counted the number of men I’ve had sex with, but it’s well over 1,000.

Mika answering a reporter’s interview

How did Mika come to be standing in this place? She was originally enrolled in a private high school with a deviation score of over 60, but dropped out because she did not fit in with her surroundings. After that, she started working at a maid cafe, and at the age of 16, she became successful and was earning 400,000 yen.

“I started standing here last October,” she said. I originally stood at the Kintetsu Namba Building, but the number of police officers wearing civilian clothing increased, and there were more customers in Kita. I could make money at maid cafes, but I could make more money at Uri. The hotel was right next door, and I could usually finish in 20 minutes or 40 minutes at the most, so it was more efficient. I’ve never been scared, and I’ve never gotten sick, so it’s safe. During “stand-up”, I’m just waiting all the time(laughs) until costumer comes. It’s easier than prostitution and it pays off.”

In response to a reporter’s question, “Have there been any complaints that the service is not good?” Mika laughs, “Basically, we target onlyfirst-time visitors, so we don’t have any complains.”

There is a reason why Mica continues to work as “stand-up.”

She has to work because she spends a lot of money on her “guess.” My “guess” is a waitress at a bar, and she spends about 1.5 million yen a month on me. It was worth it, and we became friends, though we are not dating. But I don’t know when this place will get busted either, so I guess I’m going to start working at a soap shop in the fall as a migrant.”

I approached other women in Micah’s group, and one of them was a fierce competitor who once had 10 customers in one day. On weekends, it is not uncommon for men to earn 100,000 yen in a single day, so many men visit the area.

Prostitution is not the only problem in Umeda. Recently, there have been a number of rip-offs using matching apps in the Umeda area. It has become so prevalent that even the Osaka Prefectural Police have set up a page on their website titled “Cases of high billing damage using matching apps.” A restaurant worker with knowledge of the situation revealed the following.

Sonezaki, in the same Umeda area, is one of Osaka’s most popular entertainment districts.

There are no more rip-offs by catchers, are there? They have almost disappeared. Umeda has always had rip-off stores involving semi-gangsters, and they often get busted for it, so they have changed to a more elaborate approach. Nowadays, they take you to a girl’s bar, saying that they will take you to a restaurant where they know someone through a matching app. The mainstream is to take them to a girl’s bar. There, they don’t rip you off if you can drink a lot, but if you’re a weak guy, they let you drink until you can’t remember and then make you think you’ve emptied an expensive bottle of booze. It is not surprisingly expensive, but it is like ripping off someone for 100,000 to 200,000 yen. Since there are women in the room, it is difficult for them to get into trouble if they are charged 100,000 yen or more, so it is a method that plays on men’s psychology.

The Osaka Prefectural Police are aware of the situation in Umeda, but they have been unable to take any major steps to expose it. A reporter in the society section of a national newspaper’s Osaka bureau explains.

There is no doubt that the Osaka Prefectural Police are focusing their efforts on prostitution and rip-offs. Especially with major events such as the World Expo coming up in the near future, they may put extra effort into it. On the other hand, there are many cases of individual small cases such as prostitution and petty rip-offs, which are done by individuals, and it is difficult to crack the existence of assorted assorted rip-offs. Since opportunities for lectures to the mass media are also limited, it is difficult to make big news, and the senior investigators seemed to be in a dilemma.

Will the day ever come when the streets of Umeda, where men’s desires swirl, will be purified?

  • PHOTO Kei Kato (1st and 3rd photos)

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