Key Inagawa-kai mob boss arrested

Kyodo News

An underworld kingpin in the Inagawa-kai syndicate was arrested Monday on suspicion of obstructing authorities intent on seizing his property.

Kazuo Uchibori, 56, more commonly known as Kazuya Uchibori, is a heavyweight in the Tokyo-based gang — the third largest in Japan — and heads its Kawasaki-based affiliate Yamakawa-ikka.

He has risen to prominence in recent years thanks to his financial muscle and is regarded by police investigators as “substantially the Inagawa-kai boss.”

Uchibori allegedly transferred ownership of land he owned in Kawasaki to his son in 2004 to prevent it from being auctioned off by the government-linked Resolution and Collection Corp. to recover some of the roughly ¥200 million in bank loans his wife took out and Uchibori guaranteed in 1999.

In terms of size, the Kobe-based Yamaguchi-gumi is the top underworld syndicate, followed by the Tokyo-based Sumiyoshi-kai and then the Inagawa-kai, which has about 4,800 members.