The 53rd Miss International was crowned Tuesday in Tokyo, but her predecessor, the first Japanese woman to win the title in 52 years, Ikumi Yoshimatsu, was not there to hand over her crown. Ms. Yoshimatsu (born June 21st, 1987) is an actress, best-selling author, and a social activist.
In terms of sexual equality, Japan is still decades behind most advanced nations, ranking 105 out of 136 in the 2013 Global Gender Gap Report. When it comes to show business, the nation is like 1950’s Hollywood, when the mob still ruled and powerful talent agencies controlled every aspect of the lives of their contract celebrities.
For years, the authorities have mostly turned a blind eye to the thuggish behavior and the yakuza’s influence in the Japanese entertainment world. In 2011, the Jay Leno of Japan, Shimada Shinsuke, was forced to retire after his close ties to the Yamaguchi-gumi (Japan’s largest crime group) were exposed but his talent agency, Yoshimoto Kogyo, continued business as usual. It is widely known that mob still runs many of the talent agencies. Most stars accept it as an unavoidable reality and the mainstream media, which needs access to the celebrities, blithely ignores the seedy side of the industry.
Her alleged stalker is Mr. Genichi Taniguchi, president of Pearl Dash and an executive at K-Dash. K-Dash is one of Japan’s biggest talent agencies, handling such luminaries as Ken Watanabe (The Last Samurai, Batman Begins).
Shimada Shinsuke, was forced Yamaguchi-gumi (Japan’s largest crime group) talent agency, Yoshimoto Kogyo stalker is Mr. Genichi Taniguchi
Mr. Taylor acknowledges that he owes Mr. Taniguchi money after losing a lawsuit to him in 2012.
“I have been trying to work out a payment plan with him, but he insisted on taking Ms. Yoshimatsu’s contract over as part of it. I don’t think he understands that I can’t sell her to him like she was a slave?nor would I if I could. We’re in a different age.”
Japan’s popular comment websites like 2channel are ablaze with comments expressing outrage and disappointment over the mainstream Japanese media’s failure to report her plight. 日本の2ちゃんのような人気書き込みサイトは大手メディアが彼女の窮地をリポートしないことへの怒りと失望で大炎上している
Treasury Sanctions Members of Japanese Criminal Organization
WASHINGTON ・ The U.S. Department of the Treasury today took action against four senior members of the Yamaguchi-gumi, the largest and most prominent Japanese Yakuza syndicate. Tadashi Irie, Hirofumi Hashimoto, Toshio Masaki, and Shoroku Ishida were designated pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 13581,