Former head of a prostitution club with annual sales of 2.1 billion yen “has a bad hand” as revealed in a court case
On February 18, the Tokyo District Court sentenced Shun Kuriki, 25, the head of a dispatch-type prostitution club, to two years in prison and a suspended sentence of five years for violating the Anti-Prostitution Law by forcing women into prostitution on the streets of Tokyo (the defendant sought two years in prison).
Kuriki and 13 others were arrested in the case, which was uncovered by the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department’s cyber patrol. They were said to have been meeting women on the streets of Shibuya, Ikebukuro, and other downtown areas for the purpose of prostitution. The trial revealed how Kuriki had expanded the prostitution club to the point where it was selling approximately 2.1 billion yen a year, and how he had taken care of the “welfare” of its members to improve their morale.
According to his opening statement, Kuriki dropped out of university in Tokyo, joined another prostitution ring, and became “independent” in 2018. He set up locations in Shibuya, Ikebukuro, and other downtown areas, and divided members into groups at each location. A “manager” was assigned to each location, and “manager meetings” were held as needed. The manager’s education was also ensured.
At each location, members called “hitter girls,” who posted on social networking and dating sites posing as women and inviting men to join them, “went to work” and performed their tasks. Each location competed with each other for sales, and each member was compensated based on the results of the competition. A total of 164 smartphones were seized during the search of the bases. From the members’ point of view, it must have been an “attractive” job because they did not have to take anything out of the office.
Moreover, it is said that Kuriki “consoled the members at high-class clubs” (according to the transcript).
He also “sometimes took them out for a drink. I spent about a million dollars a day at cabarets and ……1.”
Kuriki, a model with a slender figure, tall, and silver hair, answered in a matter-of-fact manner when asked about this unique “welfare program” during questioning of the defendant. He also explained why he did not allow his “hitters” to work remotely, but instead had them work at various locations.
Kuriki (defendant, hereafter Kuriki): “I had them come to work so that the number (workload) would not vary from day to day.
Prosecutor: “Morale, or to feel that way?”
Kuriki: “Yes, and also to share information. The hitter’s remuneration is deducted from the sales, leaving roughly 3 million a month in my own pocket. ……
Prosecutor: “How did you structure it?”
Kuriki: “I came up with the manual myself and taught each manager to do it.”
The prosecutor said, “You also paid the rent for the apartment. And utilities and expenses.”
He also mentioned that “hitter” employees were given a training period, just as in a regular company.
Kuriki said, “The minimum guaranteed remuneration for the training period was 25,000 yen. After that, we paid a percentage.”
The rules and benefits package that the company has developed in this way have kept internal disputes to a minimum. There was some trouble, but it was between the customers and the girls,” said Kuriki.
The young former head of the company, who had demonstrated his business skills, albeit illegally, promised to get a straight job after this arrest.
The prosecutor said, “Do you have any job security?”
Kuriki: “I’m somewhat …… good at marketing (marketing), so I’m …… good at social networking and stuff.”
Prosecutor: “I have a feeling it’s no different this time around?”
Kuriki: “Oh, on the advertising side.”
Judge: “You did illegal work this time, have you ever done anything that wasn’t illegal?”
Kuriki: “Part-time jobs and ……”
The judge said, “Three million a month at a proper job is quite a lot to earn. Do you understand?”
‘Organized crime by a prostitution group in the form of a corporation. They have profited a lot while changing their bases as needed while avoiding detection. The locations were neatly arranged with PCs, just like a company or an office, and social networking sites were used to make sure that the postings were seen by many people and that the store owners were able to bring the customers and women together. The system was set up to maximize profits. ……” (from the argument)
While the defendant’s argument condemned the illegal business, the “maximization of profits” and other such words highlighted Kuriki’s skill in the business. In his argument, defense counsel requested a stay of execution on the grounds that he had “realized the importance of employment,” etc. At the sentencing, Judge Goichi Nishino agreed, stating that “he has sworn to take a regular job in the future,” and Kuriki was given a stay of execution.
Interview and text： Yuki Takahashi
Hearing officer. Freelance writer. The Village of Tsukebi: Did a Rumor Kill Five People?" (Shobunsha), "Runaway Senior Citizen, Crime Theater" (Yoizensha Shinsho), "Kanae Kishima, Dangerous Love's Depth" (Tokuma Shoten), "Kanae Kishima Theater" (Takarajimasya), and in the past, "Kasumikko Club: Daughters' Trial Observations" (Shinchosha), and many other books based on interviews and court hearings on murder cases.