Yakuza cancel New Year’s events due to COVID-19

The picture is for illustrative purpose only. (Shutterstock)

TAIPEI (The China Post) — As the COVID-19 outbreak worsens, the Japanese government announced the cancellation of New Year’s Eve events around Shibuya as early as September.

With the same observation in mind, Inagawa-kai, the third-largest criminal syndicates in Japan canceled its New Year’s Eve events too in light of the pandemic.   

The Yakuza said on Tuesday that it is canceling final meetings on Dec. 27 and 28 and New Year’s Greetings on Jan. 7, the Asahi Shimbun reported.   

The headquarters notified subordinate gangs by fax.

According to the police, the message reads, “Please be mindful about the spread of infections.”  

The Inagawa-kai members are active in 18 administrative regions throughout Japan, and at the end of each year, the upper-level members gather in a building for an annual meeting.  

However, as the outbreak continues to spread, the Japanese government has urged people to avoid attending gatherings of more than five people.  

Given that most gang members are elderly and have poor health, the gang headquarters advised them to reduce the number of office visits and banned drinking parties.